Job Futures Methodology

Job Futures provides insight into the types of jobs available and the prospects for growth for those jobs in the future.

The information presented in the occupation profiles come from several sources. Income data represents average employment income for the year 2005 for those persons that worked in a particular occupation, from the 2006 Census. Current workforce information is taken from the 2009 NWT Community Survey conducted by the NWT Bureau of Statistics in January and February of 2009. Finally, information on future prospects for an occupation comes from the Occupational Demand Model developed by the NWT Bureau of Statistics.

Information is presented only for those occupations where adequate statistical information is available. Due to the relatively small size of the NWT's labour force, 23,200 persons in 2010, detailed data on some occupations are unavailable because there may be too few or no persons employed in a particular occupation to publish estimates.

Occupational Demand Model

The Occupational Demand Model estimates demand for occupations ten years into the future. The model estimates future demand by forecasting the employment impacts of economic growth due to new resource development or new capital projects (i.e. the Tuk-Inuvik Road). Additionally, employment shifts in the general economy unassociated with large capital projects were modeled using population forecasts.

Job prospects are ranked as low, medium and high to indicate how future demand compares to current levels. The average demand over the period 2010-2020 is taken as a ratio of current demand. The rankings (low, medium and high) are determined for each occupation relative to all other occupations. That is, occupations with the lowest 25% of demand are given a ranking of 'Low', while those with the highest 25% of demand are ranked 'High', the middle 50% is ranked as having 'Medium' prospects.

In examining the occupational forecast rankings it is important to understand that the rankings are relative rankings and not absolute. If aggregate occupation demand in the NWT over the forecast period is high in absolute terms, then the ranking of each occupation is relative to this overall trend. Therefore, it is not possible to compare these NWT occupational demand rankings with rankings from other provincial or territorial jurisdictions.

There are a number of limitations that need to be considered when using the occupation demand rankings. First, the model assumes the relationship between industries and occupations is fixed over the life of the forecast. The forecast of occupation demand does not include the impact of turnover due to job separation, such as retirement, death or resignation. Finally, the timing, scope and occurrence of specific projects that underlie the overall economic forecast may change, therefore changing the profile occupation demand. As with any forecast, reliability diminishes and uncertainty increases as one moves further away from the current period.

For further information on methodology or any information presented please contact the NWT Bureau of Statistics at 867-873-7147 or