Our Stories

May 17, 2021

Labour Market Research Project

Shaping Alberta's Workforce Transition: Labour Market Research for Cleantech with Oil & Gas


Access the Cleantech Oil and Gas Talent Readiness Survey here and scroll down to register for workshops and to learn more about this project.


The Clean Resource Innovation Network (CRIN) is committed to ensuring that development challenges within the oil and gas industry, and the emerging clean tech sector, are met with sustainable solutions.


In applying clean tech to Alberta’s hydrocarbon sector, part of ensuring the industry continues to thrive during this transition is understanding how we can continue to attract investment, innovation, and, most importantly, talent. Currently, there is little data and analysis about the extent of Alberta’s workforce and its required characteristics in enabling clean technologies - which ultimately limits effective strategic workforce planning.


In an initial assessment, by PetroLMI, evidence indicated that with minimal retraining and support, many of the skills required by the evolving energy ecosystem can be sourced from the existing pool of talent. These findings highlight an opportunity to retain highly skilled workers, maintain sensible talent costs, and enhance the economic contribution of unemployed and under-employed workers to our economy.

Recognizing this initial assessment, we need to ensure that any and all barriers to this workforce transition are identified and mitigated. Doing so requires:

  • A collaborative assessment of what the labour landscape of the cleantech oil and gas ecosystem currently looks like and what its needs are moving forward
  • Effective dissemination of clean tech career and labour demand information to job seekers and those that support them including career/employment counsellors and training providers


Project Objectives and Timeline (April 2021 - September 2021) 

The objective of this research project, funded by the Government of Alberta in partnership with CRIN, is to ensure a continued skilled, innovative, and diverse talent pipeline for the emerging clean tech sector that supports the sustainability and competitiveness of Alberta’s oil and gas industry. We will do this by:

  • Completing a labour market assessment by means of facilitating workshops and surveys with employers, job seekers, and labour supply professionals
  • Disseminating tools that promote demand-driven career pathways and trainings
  • Developing a labour market outlook and strategy for the ecosystem moving forward

Market Assessment

As part of the labour market assessment component of this research, CRIN will host a series of workshops to gather insight on labour demand and supply. This will be an invaluable opportunity for diverse stakeholders to share knowledge and participate in facilitated discussion and polls about the current state of the industry and its workforce needs moving forward. This includes discussing in-demand occupations, hiring challenges, and availability and readiness of talent.

Participating in these workshops is an opportunity for employers and labour supply stakeholders to:

  • Leverage their strategic planning
  • Share unique insights
  • Inform strategies that support the industry’s need to attract and retain diverse talent with expertise from technical to entrepreneurial
  • Influence career and training decisions.


2021 Canadian Cleantech Talent Readiness Survey

  • Who should take the survey: Post-secondary students, new grads and job seekers
  • What you'll be asked: Career intentions, factors in career/employment considerations, understanding of cleantech careers, and interest in working within the oil & gas industry
  • When: Survey open now through mid-July

2021 Labour Supply Workshops

These workshops are for educators, trainers, career counsellors, and professional associations  who can give insight into potential opportunities and challenges for the cleantech and oil and gas industries as they look to expand their talent pool.

  • Thursday, June 24, 1:30 – 3:00 p.m. (MT) - Register now 
  • Tuesday, June 29, 9:00 – 10:30 a.m. (MT) - Register now 


2021 Labour Demand Workshops 


Please register for a workshop according to your role/area of expertise.

  1. Workshops for operations and technical leaders in the oil and gas and cleantech industries who can speak to skill and occupational requirements. For example:  entrepreneurs, small business owners, producers, field operations managers, service and supply companies, and research and accelerator organizations, etc.  
    • June 1, 9:00-10:30 am (MT) - Thank you for attending!
    • June 7, 1:30-3:00 pm (MT) - Thank you for attending! 
    • July 13, 7:30-9:00 am (MT) - Register now
    • July 22, 11:30-1:00 pm (MT) - Register now
  2. A workshop for Human Resources professionals who can speak to hiring, workforce planning, and organizational development and function. For example: recruiters, hiring managers, workforce planning and organization development professionals, etc.
    • July 21, 11:30-1:00 pm (MT) - Register now


Project Partners

The team assembled to carry out this project includes CRIN, Petroleum Technology Alliance of Canada (PTAC), Alberta Clean Technology Industry Alliance (now Foresight) and Alberta Labour and Immigration as partners, along with contracted project consultants Cheryl Knight and Pat Hufnagel-Smith.

Cheryl and Pat will conduct the research and analysis required to quantify hiring requirements for the clean tech sector and synthesize other labour market insights as evidence to inform a labour market strategy for the sector. They will work closely with the project partners to facilitate a strategy development session with clean tech employers and representative organizations and will play a key role in the implementation of the dissemination and promotion phase of this project.

Cheryl Knight was the founding Executive Director and CEO of the Petroleum Human Resources Council of Canada (now PetroLMI). Operating her own consulting firm since 2013, she has become one of Canada’s recognized experts in energy industry workforce issues and strategies. Her education includes a Bachelor of Arts degree with Honours in Psychology, a Master of Education in Counselling and a Strategic Workforce Planning certificate. She is a recognized expert in understanding trends and influences on Canada’s labour market.

Pat Hufnagel-Smith has over 20 years’ experience providing insights into the dynamics of Canada’s labour market, emerging trends and occupations, and workforce requirements. In addition to a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and Certificate in Adult Education and Facilitation, Pat holds a Master’s Certificate in Project Management. Two areas Pat is most passionate about are: the effective transition of skilled and experienced workers between industries, and helping clients use labour market intelligence to develop effective talent strategies.


Together, Cheryl and Pat have partnered to provide clients innovative and practical workforce strategies to address business challenges and shifting workforce requirements under the banner Talent Needs for the Evolving Energy Ecosystem.

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