2017 was an impressive year for Okanagan region job market. Within the span of one year, Kelowna – the largest city in Okanagan Valley – went from having the worst job market in Canada, to being number one. The number of jobs in Okanagan has increased a whopping 14.3% in 2017, and has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country.
So what’s the reason behind the growth? Here are three major factors contributing to the rise of jobs in Okanagan:
The technology sector in particular has had a significant impact on Okanagan. In just three years, tech has grown 30% to become a 1.3 billion dollar industry. QHR and Disney Interactive are sector leaders that paved the way for new tech businesses and are further enabled by Accelerate Okanagan. AO is a not-for-profit organization that provides tech business with mentorship and connections needed to succeed in Okanagan.
Aside from the technology sector, Okanagan has seen impressive growth among a number of other industries. Healthcare, Tourism, Agriculture, and Manufacturing, have all become economic strengths within the region.
From an international investment standpoint, it’s far cheaper to open a business in Okanagan than in the lower mainland. The Business Development Bank of Canada also offers more support to small businesses and programs for local Okanagan businesses. As a result, entrepreneurs are flocking to the region.
There are a number of compelling reasons to relocate to Okanagan. It’s a beautiful place to live, with Okanagan Lake is one of the regions highlights. Okanagan has a better weather and more sun, than its rainier counterpart in the Lower Mainland.
The thriving agriculture in Okanagan means access to fresh local produce. And of course, those enjoy wine will also be attracted to the 30+ wineries in the region!
Finally, Okanagan has become a far more affordable place to live compared to Vancouver’s dramatically inflated housing market.
For the recently graduated who looking to enter the workforce, Okanagan is an excellent place to begin your career. The Okanagan and Kelowna area offers the best of both worlds: opportunities to thrive your industry while enjoying a high quality lifestyle.