Yes, there’s a big Trump effect on the number of job seekers looking to become U.S. expats. Let’s get that out of the way to start with. The number of searches for jobs in Canada by U.S. residents took a big jump immediately after the U.S. election, and again after the January presidential inauguration. In fact, Canada’s immigration site crashed on election night.
Online job search firm Indeed looked at this phenomenon from a tech perspective, and found that software engineers and other tech workers are typically more interested in Canadian jobs than the general workforce. What’s more, says Indeed, their interest zooms in on two metropolitan areas: Ottawa and Toronto.
Overall, people living in the United States but checking out jobs in Canada gravitated to Toronto—not surprising, given that Toronto is Canada’s largest city. But for tech-job seekers, Ottawa edges out Toronto. Indeed calculated this by looking at the share of U.S. clicks for tech jobs in an area compared with the share of U.S. clicks for all jobs. By this metric, the Kitchener-Waterloo area came in third, followed by Vancouver and Montreal.
In its analysis, Indeed’s Hiring Lab, the company’s research arm, pointed out that Ottawa owes its appeal as a tech hub to the 1990s establishment of Nortel Networks’ research and development headquarters and, more recently, the birth of Shopify in that city. Toronto and Kitchener, meanwhile, are potential Silicon Valleys thanks to universities with top computer science programs. Kitchener’s University of Waterloo, in particular, has become well-known for spawning startups like Blackberry, as well as being a feeder school for Silicon Valley tech talent.
Tekla S. Perry is a senior editor at IEEE Spectrum. Based in Palo Alto, Calif., she's been covering the people, companies, and technology that make Silicon Valley a special place for more than 40 years. An IEEE member, she holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from Michigan State University.