Albertas Projected Construction Labour Forecast

Alberta has been significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic resulting in economic losses compounded by large investment declines. A brighter future for Alberta is ahead as construction projects increase with population growth and the increased demand for pipeline export capacity. Over the next decade, projected investment in health care, education, pipeline, transit, and other infrastructure will help grow and sustain construction employment through to 2023. New home construction and renovation work will continue to cycle up over the next 5 years as economic conditions improve and population growth accelerates.

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Leading Calgary Staffing Agency

If you are looking for a short-term labor job or a permanent placement, Matrix Labour Leasing is committed to placing our employees in positions with great companies fostering opportunities for advancement and career success. If you are seeking to build a robust and resilient workforce, Matrix Labour Leasing can help you find the industry’s best talent with our streamlined recruiting process. 

As the leading trades staffing agency in Calgary, we can help you land your dream job in construction. 

Want to know more? Contact us by calling 1-866-666-9520 or by visiting our headquarters.

Alberta’s Construction Labour Forecast

The Alberta economy is just beginning to bounce back from one of the worst downturns in its history caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic and the 2020 collapse in oil prices. There is still persistent uncertainty in the energy sector and significant deferrals and cancellations of investments are significantly tempering the expectations of short-term economic recovery in Alberta. According to Buildforce Canada, over the next ten years, the construction industry will need to recruit and retain over 40,000 new employees to replace expected retirees. Expansion within the construction industry will be expected to take hold after 2023 driven by population growth and increased pipeline export capacity. The current distribution of construction employment in 2021 is:

  • Housing 22%
  • Non-oil sands engineering 21%
  • Residential maintenance and renovation 20%
  • Industrial, commercial, institutional 16%
  • Non-residential maintenance 13%
  • Oil sands 9%


Due to a drop in housing starts that were caused by a weak job market and high inventory of unoccupied units, a significant decline in residential requirements for 2020 resulted. There were significant increases in housing renovations over the last year while housing starts fell from 27,300 units in 2019 to 24,000 units in 2020. Employment for new home construction is expected to rise in the next five years due to improved economic conditions and population growth. Total residential construction employment is expected to have a 4% increase by 2030 in Alberta but then begin to recede.


A slight increase in activity within the non-residential sector is expected in 2021. This will slowly produce more stable levels of employment. The sharp reduction of commercial and industrial building, transportation, and the mining industry lowered 2020 non-residential construction levels and is expected to remain subdued over the next year as public-sector building projects settle down. The COVID-19 pandemic impacted the construction of commercial buildings impeding the ability to complete projects on time and budget. Employment within non-residential sectors is expected to rise 16% (16,000 workers) over the next ten years in Alberta. Increased activity within the non-residential sector is expected to increase closer to 2030 as economic recovery and population growth increase demand for commercial services.

Oil Sands

After the 2014 peak in the oil sands industry, new investments bottomed out for the next 6 years. Pipeline export capacity is expected to improve starting in 2023 which will result in both mining and in-situ production trending upwards. Construction employment will begin shifting to maintenance activities from prioritizing the sustainment of capital investment accounts. The volatility of shutdown/ turnaround work within the oil sands sector generates significant market challenges due to seasonal peak demands within a year requiring workers to spend long periods on-site.

Contact Matrix Labour Leasing For Your Staffing Needs

Matrix Labour Leasing specializes in short-term labor placement and construction staffing, helping our clients attract the best-skilled workers out there. If you're tired of dealing with the same old recruitment agencies in Calgary or want to experience the benefits of outsourcing, contact us by filling out our online contact form or by calling 1-866-666-9520.


Are short-term jobs a good way to start getting my foot in the door in the construction industry or should I find a full-time permanent position?

Short-term jobs are a great way to get your foot into the door of the construction industry. If you are unsure about what area of expertise and focus you wish to pursue in the construction industry, short-term jobs offer a great way to explore these avenues so you can decide for yourself what area you would like to pursue as a career. Check out our short-term placements and take the opportunity to explore a new opportunity in construction.

What construction jobs pay the most in Alberta?

According to Statistics Canada, crane operators, drillers, and blasters have the highest median income. Construction trades helpers and laborers make an average salary of $25.12 an hour in Alberta.

Do staffing agencies take a portion of my pay?

No. Staffing agencies work by charging the company that the candidate has successfully been placed with. They charge an amount that is predetermined and approved by both parties.

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