iCME: A virtual career matchmaker

Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters aims to narrow the gap between job vacancy and successful candidate with its iCME virtual job-matching service.

April 4, 2012   by PLANT STAFF

OTTAWA: Having trouble filling key positions that require specific industrial skills and experience? Maybe you’re looking for a job that could use your skill set but focusing the search is proving to be a challenge.

Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) aims to narrow the gap between job vacancy and successful candidate with a simple-to-navigate national web portal that acts as a virtual matchmaking service. But iCME (Innovative Careers in Manufacturing and Exporting) also provides tools for all the stakeholders to help fill job needs and interest next-generation workers in manufacturing careers. It’s now operational at and there are more than 200 jobs already posted.

“The shortage of skilled employees in the manufacturing sector is not looming, it’s upon us,” says Jeff Brownlee, CME’s vice-president of communications. “We were getting calls on a daily basis from CME members, employers, manufacturers, colleges and universities asking us if we had a tool that would help them connect.”

Indeed, the Conference Board of Canada projects the country will be short 1 million workers by 2020, while CME anticipates a deficit of 500,000 over the next decade, and a shortage of 800,000 in the oil sands by 2030.


“If you’re a manufacturer in Fort McMurray, Alta., posting a job through traditional channels might yield a response, but chances are it won’t,” says Lothian Derek Lothian, national communications manager, who developed the project. “iCME is set up as a one-stop shop that connects people with the resources that will fill their employment needs.”

Job postings are tagged with iCME essentials such as experience, education and skills, which quickly narrows the search for qualified candidates without having to compile and sift through resumes.

The site offers resources for employers needing help with job-related issues such as apprenticeship information, or what to consider when hiring internationally trained staff, and there’s help for job seekers who, for example, are looking for a career in international business.

“[Manufacturing] is not all welding and metal stamping. There are some really cool jobs in manufacturing and we wanted to bring them to the forefront,” says Lothian.

The project is backed by stakeholders from government, industry and education, which Lothian says will also help to push the message to their constituents.

Postings will cost $299 but job seekers and employers can create profiles for free. CME members and PLANT readers (user code: PLANT) can post jobs free until May 1.

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