The pandemic prompted many Canadians to rethink their work life, upgrade their skills and look for a new career. There are many different reasons for this: needing to work different hours so that childcare isn’t as much of an issue, for instance, or suffering from burnout and wanting to get out of the service or healthcare industries. Considering a new career, of course, starts with research: what does the job entail? What do you need to qualify for the job? Is it worth it? Most importantly: how much does it pay?
We looked at what the top-searched jobs in Canada are at the moment. Here they are, ranked by salary. All salary information comes from PayScale.
Data entry clerk (Average salary range: $29,000 to $48,000)
For workers who don’t have any tertiary education and don’t want to be on the frontlines in the service industry, being a data entry clerk could be an attractive option. It’s something you can do remotely and part-time, so you can schedule your work hours according to when childcare is available, for instance. It doesn’t require any training other than computer literacy and the training provided by your employer, so you can start earning quickly too. However, with most employees these days being able to enter data into the system themselves, the job prospects for data entry clerks are limited.
Administrative assistant (Average annual salary range: $31,000 to $53,000)
Many departments in companies have become busier during the pandemic. These include HR, legal, accounting and customer service. This has also meant a greater need for administrative assistants who can take care of the little details. It’s a job that easily lends itself to a hybrid work setup, since most of the functions can be done from home with only occasional visits to the office.
Dental assistant (Average annual salary range: $36,000 to $58,000)
Dentists have one of the most in-demand jobs for 2025 and beyond. However, a dentist is nothing without their assistant. Dental assistants aren’t the same as dental hygienists, who assess patients’ dental health and provide preventative care. Instead, dental assistants support dentists and dental hygienists by preparing and handing on the instruments. They also perform administrative duties like scheduling appointments, maintaining patient records and billing.
Paralegal (Average annual salary range: $34,000 to $73,000)
Law firms have had to find new ways to work as courts went online during lockdown. Paralegals already had one of the best jobs for introverts, since it involves research and working with documents rather than interacting face-to-face with clients. Now it’s even better, since many paralegals have also made the move to working from home. There is also a steady demand for paralegals in Canada.
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Licensed practical nurse (Average annual salary range: $44,000 to $71,000)
Covid-19 has taken a huge toll on Canada’s nurses, many of whom are suffering from burnout. Still, there’s been a surge of interest in nursing as a career. Despite this interest, there is a shortage of nurses in the country, partly because there are only limited spots available in nursing programs to train new nurses while the experienced ones leave the profession in droves. Licensed practical nurses earn less than registered nurses but they also can start working earlier, since they only need a nursing diploma rather than a bachelor’s degree as part of their licensing requirements. This means their training takes about two years instead of four.
Electrician (Average annual salary range: $38,000 to $91,000)
Who needs the average engineer salary in Canada if you can have one of those jobs that don’t need a degree but still pay well? Private contractors saw a slowdown when lockdowns started, since construction projects were delayed and electrical work was limited to emergencies. However, electricians remain in demand throughout the country and are considered essential services. After all, they’re keeping the lights — and the lifesaving hospital equipment — on.
Teacher (Average annual salary range: $41,000 to $97,000)
Canada is facing a shortage of these superheroes who have helped our children learn while cooped up at home. Moving to virtual classrooms during lockdown has been a huge challenge for everyone involved: for kids who suddenly couldn’t see their friends in person anymore; for parents who realized that their kids weren’t perfect little angles after all; and especially for teachers, who had to figure out how to teach online with no training and minimal preparation, while trying to deal with their own kids too. Still, it’s a job with great future prospects and if you already have a bachelor’s degree, making the switch will be easy: all you need is additional teacher training, which takes about a year.
Stripper (Average annual salary range: $31,000 to $201,000)
Type the word “stripper” into your search engine and the results will be quite a mixed bag: from paint strippers to floor strippers. However, strip clubs have been hard hit by lockdown restrictions and many dancers were forced to go virtual with the help of sites like OnlyFans. Even though most clubs are open again (with restrictions), the way strippers work has been irrevocably changed. For one thing, in many clubs, the one piece of clothing they won’t take off is their mask. They are often self-employed, renting stage time at clubs. The more lucrative jobs are in more remote locales with more traditionally male-dominated industries (think: mining and forestry).
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Pharmacist (Average annual salary range: $78,000 to $116,000)
Pharmacists are the unsung heroes of Canada’s healthcare system. When the pandemic started, many family practices went virtual but for minor ailments, people could still see their pharmacist in person. So, that’s where they went for advice, medication and referrals, if necessary. Now, of course, they’re crucial in getting Canadians vaccinated and helping to get the pandemic under control. They might not make quite as much as the average doctor salary in Canada but they have one of the most in-demand jobs.
See also: 20 low-stress jobs that pay more than $100K.
Psychotherapist (Average annual salary range: $52,000 to $235,000)
The pandemic and all that has come with it — isolation, job losses, losing loved ones — has caused a mental health crisis in Canada, as in other countries around the world. Psychotherapists have gone virtual and their practices are thriving. They are trained to treat mental health disorders and help their clients with everything from relationships to how to cope with social anxiety. Their income depends very much on how many clients they take on.
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