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Mar 28, 2022

Pulse Check: The biggest challenges facing Canadian Businesses this quarter

Rising input costs, labour and supply chain challenges cited as top obstacles.

Welcome to our Pulse Check blog series! A quarterly look at the top challenges and opportunities facing Canadian businesses from coast to coast to coast based on our Business Data Lab’s (BDL) analysis of the quarterly Canadian Survey on Business Conditions (CSBC).

Our recently launched Business Data Lab (BDL) has just released its analysis of the first Canadian Survey on Business Conditions of 2022.

What exactly is the Canadian Survey on Business Conditions (CSBC)?

Early in the pandemic, Statistics Canada and the Canadian Chamber partnered to quickly develop an innovative survey to learn about the issues facing Canadian businesses across the country, providing critical insights for decision makers and businesses.

This successful collaboration will continue through the BDL.

Each quarter we’ll report the latest insights on the biggest issues and trends affecting businesses-on-the-ground, all drawn from Statistics Canada surveys of tens of thousands of Canadian businesses.

What are the top 10 takeaways from this quarter’s CSBC that surveyed over 17,000 Canadian businesses in January and February? Let’s take a look:

  1. The top obstacles for Canadian businesses are rising input costs, labour and supply chain challenges.
  2. 50% of Canadian businesses expect rising input costs to be an obstacle in the next three months.
  3. The accommodation and food services and manufacturing sectors are experiencing the strongest cost pressures, and over 80% of these businesses are likely to pass on cost increases to customers in the next year.
  4. 72% of Canadian businesses reported that supply chain challenges worsened over the last three months.
  5. Acute labour shortages will likely lead to rising wages and more flexible work arrangements.
  6. 50% of businesses in Quebec are facing challenges recruiting skilled employees — higher than any other province in Canada.
  7. Almost half of Canadian businesses say they can’t take on more debt or are unsure if they can.
  8. Women occupied only 37% of senior management roles in Canadian businesses.
  9. Almost 30% of businesses plan to offer hybrid work arrangements, with 9% going completely remote.
  10. Despite a challenging operating context, 70% of Canadian businesses are optimistic about the year ahead.

To see more findings and get the full analysis for Q1, click here.

To learn more about the BDL and CSBC, click here