Canadian Tech Talent Thrives from Coast to Coast

July 28, 2022 4 Minute

Scoring Tech Talent 2022

Canadian cities have a good thing going when it comes to tech job growth. They are capitalizing on recent success to move up the rankings in CBRE’s just-released Scoring Tech Talent report.

“We now have 11 Canadian cities among North America’s top-performing destinations for tech talent,” says CBRE Vice Chairman Paul Morassutti. “It’s a testament to the impressive momentum this sector has been gathering over the past five years.”

In the new 10th edition of the Scoring Tech Talent report, Toronto hoisted itself back onto the podium, ranking 3rd for tech talent behind the San Francisco Bay Area and Seattle. Toronto generated an eye-popping 88,900 tech positions between 2016 and 2021, the most of all 50 North American markets covered in the report.

Vancouver moved up three spots to take No. 8 in the ranking, bolstered by 63% growth of its tech labour pool over the past five years, the highest growth percentage of all 50 North American markets measured.

Highly Concentrated

Ottawa, coming in at No. 13, boasted the highest tech talent concentration of all 50 markets, with 11.6% of the city’s total employment force working in tech. A high tech talent concentration is a strong indicator of how “tech” a market is and is correlated with future growth potential. Our nation’s capital has a tech employment environment that’s uniquely conducive to fostering innovation.

Montreal earned the 15th position on the ranking, up one spot from last year, with 26.5% tech talent pool growth over five years. The city produced 7,281 more tech jobs than it did tech degrees, making it the fifth leading job market out of the 50 ranked in the Tech Talent report.

In 24th place, the Waterloo Region stood out as the 5th most tech-concentrated market in the top 50, with 9.6% of its total workforce currently employed in tech jobs across several industries. The North American average is 5.6%.

Alberta Loves Tech

Alberta’s big cities had strong showings in the Tech Talent report.

By creating over 7,400 new tech jobs since 2016, Calgary placed 8th on the tech talent brain gain list and ranked 28th overall. Edmonton moved up three spots to the 35th position thanks to a 39.7% increase in its tech talent pool between 2016 and 2021. The city added over 32,400 tech jobs during that time span, making it one of the leading tech job markets on the continent.

Quebec City’s performance earned it the 39th overall spot in the Tech Talent ranking. The provincial capital stood out as the 3rd fastest-growing tech market in the top 50, alongside Toronto and Vancouver.

Boasting 43% tech talent growth over five years, Quebec City is home to more than 35,000 tech employees and is considered one of North America’s fastest-growing small tech markets.

Up and Coming

CBRE also ranks the up-and-coming Tech Talent markets, which are separate from the 50 larger tech markets.

These ‘Next 25’ markets are ranked by a narrower set of criteria than the top 50, including tech talent supply, wages, tech talent concentration, recent tech talent growth rates and their outlook.

Three Canadian cities featured on this list: Halifax (No. 9), London (No. 10) and Winnipeg (No. 12), with London nearly doubling its tech talent pool between 2016 and 2021 – the fastest market growth observed in the whole report.

Says Morassutti: “Though the tech industry faces some very real, short-term cyclical challenges, our longer-term thesis remains unchanged: the technology sector will continue to drive outsized growth as our knowledge-based economy expands.”

To download the full report, visit