$1.5 million for subsidies for new hires for biotech businesses admin April 29, 2015

OTTAWA, April 29, 2015 – Canadian bio-economy businesses can look forward to additional federal support as BioTalent Canada’s highly successful wage subsidy program, “Career Focus” has been extended another year with an additional $1.5 million for subsidies for new hires for biotech businesses.

The organization received word very recently from the Youth Employment Strategy program of  Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) that Career Focus would be extended to a third consecutive year, ending March 31, 2016.

“We’re quite pleased,” said Rob Henderson BioTalent Canada’s President and CEO.  “This extension is a recognition not just of the success of the program, but also of the real challenges that biotech businesses face in addressing their skills gaps through the hiring of new graduates.”

In the past two years, BioTalent Canada has successfully placed 255 new graduates in their first job.  Many of those businesses openly state they would not have been able to hire, were it not for the success of the program.

“As a startup company, every penny counts. These types of initiatives really help us to push beyond what we could do on our own,” said Derek Glennie, VP Engineering at Spartan Bioscience of Ottawa.

Dianne Beveridge, President of AYVA Educational Solutions of Oakville, Ontario said, “This is the type of program the government should be funding. It benefits both the employer and recent graduate. It allows the employer to evaluate the performance and productivity prior to making a more significant investment. I believe it is an invaluable experience/opportunity for the “intern” to get their foot in the door.”

As for the young new graduates, the Career Focus program continues to allow them opportunities that would not otherwise have been available.

Taylor White, a Career Focus participant, said, “Without the program, I likely would not have been able to secure a full-time position at Tipi Mountain in Cranbrook, British Columbia. This funding has allowed me to work with my employer to develop a position that is relevant to the business and in line with my field of interest.”

Another Career Focus participant, Patricia D’Amato, had a similar opinion. “Without the Career Focus Program I may have not landed a position with Nutrasource in Guelph, Ontario. With guidance from my supervisors and other employees within the organization, I’ve gained more confidence professionally and have obtained valuable experience that will stay with me throughout my career.”

The large number of successful placements from the past two years has also allowed BioTalent Canada the ability to publish a new Labour Market Report: “Opening the Door: Building Careers for New Grads in Biotech.” The report, released last month and sponsored by biotech companies and associations from across Canada, sheds light on hiring practices, salaries, education and a myriad of other information to guide employers and students as they strive to create that all-important first job.

About Career Focus

The Career Focus Program is a wage subsidy program funded by the federal Youth Employment Strategy, for bio-economy employers to hire the talent they need and for recent graduates to gain the work experience they require – by subsidizing the salary of a recent graduate. For more information on how this program has impacted Canada’s bio-economy and how biotech business and new grads can apply to the program, visit

About BioTalent Canada

BioTalent Canada is the HR partner of Canada’s bio-economy. As an HR expert and national non-profit organization, BioTalent Canada focuses on building partnerships and skills for Canada’s bio-economy to ensure the industry has access to job-ready people. Through projects, research and product development BioTalent Canada connects employers with job seekers, delivers human resource information and skills development tools so the industry can focus on strengthening Canada’s biotech business. For more information please visit

Media inquiries:

Fiorella Jansen-Nicorescu
Marketing & Communications Manager
BioTalent Canada
613-235-1402 ext. 229

Post Tags