Canadian Workers Stretch Their Horizons as the Search for Jobs Goes Global, Kelly Global Workforce Index(TM) Finds

TORONTO--(Marketwire - March 15, 2011) -  Almost three-quarters of Canadian respondents would be willing to move for the right job, with many even prepared to relocate to another country or continent in order to secure their preferred position, according to the latest survey from workforce solutions leader, Kelly Services® (NASDAQ: KELYA) (NASDAQ: KELYB).

By far the most mobile workers are among Gen Y (aged 18-29) who are more willing to relocate than their Gen X (aged 30-47) and baby boomer (aged 48-65) counterparts, including moving across the globe for the right job.

The findings are part of the Kelly Global Workforce Index, which obtained the views of approximately 97,000 people in 30 countries including approximately 4,500 in Canada.

The survey, conducted from October 2010 through January 2011, also reveals a significant number of people working in unconventional work arrangements, involving long or unusual hours, multiple jobs, living away from home or excessive travel.

"Across many industries, there are multitudes of workers who are prepared to move within their own country, or move abroad in the pursuit of work," says Kelly Services VP and Managing Director of Canadian Operations Karin French. "In an environment where the market for talent is becoming global, many individuals are willing to relocate for work, rather than simply waiting for work to come to them."

A total of 70 percent of respondents say they are prepared to move for the right job. While 48 percent are prepared to move within the country, 22 percent are willing to relocate to another country or continent.

The most desirable destination for Canadian job seekers is Europe, selected by 31 percent, slightly ahead of North America (30 percent), and followed by Asia Pacific (7 percent), South America (4 percent), Middle East (4 percent), and Africa (2 percent).

Results of the survey in Canada show:

  • 30 percent of Gen Y are prepared to travel abroad for the right job, compared with 21 percent of Gen X and 15 percent of baby boomers. Men are also more willing to move than women.
  • Among various industry sectors, those working in science, and engineering are the most prepared to shift countries for work (33 percent and 29 percent respectively).
  • The overwhelming factor preventing people from moving abroad for a job is moving away from family and friends, cited by 57 percent, followed by cost of moving (22 percent), language barriers (10 percent), and cultural differences (3 percent).
  • The desire to move to a different continent is driven by the experience rather than setting up permanent residence, with 63 percent prepared to stay for three years or less.
  • Almost one third (30 percent) are working in what they consider unconventional arrangements. Of these, the most common grievance is unusual hours, affecting 28 percent, followed by long hours (25 percent), multiple jobs (21 percent), living away from home (10 percent), and excessive travel (8 percent).
  • 45 percent of those working in unconventional arrangements believe they can only continue doing so for up to one year. However, more than a quarter (28 percent) say they can sustain it indefinitely.

"Many skills that were once specific to a region or country are now able to be carried out in varied parts of the globe, meaning that job mobility can become important for career advancement. In fast-growing sectors such as engineering, science, finance and healthcare, there is diverse global demand that can present personal rewards and career opportunities for those willing to travel," French concludes.

To access the survey results from the Americas, APAC and EMEA, please visit the Kelly Services Global Press Room.

About the Kelly Global Workforce Index
The Kelly Global Workforce Index is an annual survey revealing opinions about work and the workplace from a generational viewpoint. Approximately 97,000 people from the Americas, APAC and EMEA responded to the 2011 survey with results published on a quarterly basis. Analysis of the 2011 data was conducted by Echo Research. Kelly Services was the recipient of a MarCom Platinum Award in 2010 and a Gold Award in 2009 for the Kelly Global Workforce Index in the Research/Study category.

About Kelly Services
Kelly Services, Inc. (NASDAQ: KELYA) (NASDAQ: KELYB) is a leader in providing workforce solutions. Kelly offers a comprehensive array of outsourcing and consulting services as well as world-class staffing on a temporary, temporary-to-hire and direct-hire basis. Serving clients around the globe, Kelly provides employment to more than 530,000 employees annually. Revenue in 2010 was $5 billion. Visit and connect with us on Facebook, LinkedIn, & Twitter.

Contact Information:

Media Contacts:

Kate Samson
(416) 646-4249

Kathy Fisher
(248) 244-4909