HR Meets Tech: 2021 Canadian Trends to Watch Out For

As the world looks to recover from the socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19, numerous trends have emerged between the intersection of technology and human resources in Canada. These developments seek to enrich the country’s tech ecosystem while breaking down hiring barriers for scale-up companies, even amid a global pandemic. Here are four trends to keep an eye out for as the world returns to a working pace in the year ahead.

1. Back-to-Work or Work From Home?

One development in a post-COVID environment is how Canadian companies manage their return back into the office. According to Maclean’s Canada, the demand for remote access will grow by over 100% in 2021 than before the pandemic.1 This statistic aligns with another recent trend of more businesses bundling their back-office processes through software to reduce costs.2 Many companies have already begun planning their 2021 international hiring strategy by allowing foreign contractors to work remote first and schedule immigration logistics once it is safe to do so. Interested in pursuing this route? Global Skills Hub can help you manage the entire end-to-end process behind the remote-to-permanent model.

2. The Development of Technical Roles

According to Randstad Canada, the average annual IT salary in Canada for 2021 will grow $5000 from the previous year, signifying an increase in demand for skilled tech talent in the space. The five most in-demand programming languages in Canada are Java, Linux, JavaScript, SQL, and C+/.NET. Certifications also play a crucial role in the recruitment process, with the PMP, CISSP, and CSM certifications being especially popular among tech employers.3 As 40% of Canadians are currently working remotely, it’s no surprise that four technology-related jobs constitute Randstad’s Top 10 in-demand remote jobs for Canada in 2021 (IT Support, IT Consultant, Data Analyst, and Project Manager).4 Some other in-demand technical positions include Quality Assurance Engineer, IT Project Managers/Business Analysts, and QA analysts.3

3. Strategy, AI, and Consumer Behaviour

Many analysts and industry experts predict an explosive year in 2021 for AI, Machine Learning, and the Tech Strategy sector. For instance, a recent Deloitte report forecasting 2021 tech trends cited numerous new consumer behaviour developments, including a heightened demand for security, data privacy, and highly-personalized experiences that blend physical and digital interactions.5 In the B2B environment, businesses are increasingly looking for secure collaboration and productivity tools that enable Hybrid working.2 From a recruiter’s standpoint, these preferences may indicate a greater incentive to hire specialized workers focused on fields including security engineering. A Bain article further emphasizes these ideas, referencing an 86% increase in AI financial sector investments by 2025.6 One particular Bain technology trend to note is “Next-Gen HR.” which involves businesses leveraging technology to develop innovative hiring processes that quickly and efficiently identify their best candidates.6 This idea plays to Global Skills Hub’s hiring capabilities of helping build custom tech talent pipelines to source high-quality and engaged talent.

4. Canadian Immigration Growth

Between 2021 and 2023, the Canadian government aims to considerably strengthen its post-pandemic economic recovery by welcoming up to 1.2 million immigrants with approximately 401,000 permanent residents arriving this year. The largest Canadian Immigration component will be economic immigrants (60%), followed by the families and refugees.7 As the plan is considered one of Canada’s most ambitious growth targets in history,8 this presents an opportunity for employers to leverage the Global Talent Stream to upskill workers while diversifying their workforce’s capabilities and talents. Check out our article on The Three Ways Canadians Benefit from immigration to learn more about the growing incentive to hire abroad.

The 2021 Outlook

In general, 2021 serves as a pivotal year for Canadian companies to reassess where they lie in post-COVID recovery, shifting consumer preferences, emerging technologies, and immigration trends. While venturing forward requires a mix of both caution and pragmatism, the general outlook for 2021 appears to be hopeful and optimistic. To learn more about how Global Skills Hub can help your team get a head start on achieving your hiring goals this year, feel free to visit us at




We help companies hire top international technical talent, manage the immigration process, and ensure successful candidate integration into the workforce.