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Occupational Profile

Economic Development Officer

Economic development officers (EDOs) promote economic growth in communities through initiatives such as, attracting new businesses and encouraging the expansion of existing businesses.

  • Avg. Salary $102,497.00
  • Avg. Wage $51.36
  • Minimum Education 2 years post-secondary
  • Outlook Up
  • Employed 3,200
  • In Demand Medium
Also Known As

Business and Tourism Development Manager, Business Development Officer, Community Development Officer, Directors of Economic Development, Economic Development Coordinator, Economic Development Researcher, Tourism and Economic Development Officer, Tourism Marketing Officer

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

59%
59%
Average Wage
Starting
Overall
Top
  • Certification Not Regulated
  • Strength Required Strength requirements vary
NOC & Interest Codes
The Economic Development Officer is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Business Development Officers and Marketing Researchers and Consultants
NOC code: 4163
DIRECTIVE

Interest in co-ordinating information to plan development projects with representatives of a wide variety of industrial and commercial enterprises, business associations and government agencies, and to develop strategies to attract venture capital; and in administering programs to promote industrial and commercial business investment and tourism

INNOVATIVE

Interest in developing policies and programs to promote industrial and commercial business investment in urban and rural areas, and in developing social and economic profiles of urban and rural areas to encourage industrial and commercial investment and development

SOCIAL

Interest in consulting to advise on procedures and requirements for government approval

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation. 

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Duties
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Depending on the structure of an economic development board or organization, the community may have an appointed economic development coordinator or economic development officer. The economic development officer is a liaison between the municipal council, economic development committee, business development organizations (e.g., Chamber of Commerce) and the community.

The duties of an economic development officer can range from economic development program coordination and implementation, supervision, to matching business investment opportunities with investors. It is important to note that the job is not about creating business or jobs, but rather, it is about facilitating an environment where business and investment can flourish.

In general, economic development officers:

  • prepare strategic plans and carry out economic development initiatives by identifying and promoting new business and/or industrial opportunities
  • compile and regularly update demographic information in order to promote the community
  • prepare and disseminate communication materials
  • identify business resources relevant to the businesses in the community or region
  • maintain active contacts with relevant agencies at all levels of government
  • identify and promote government programs to assist businesses, communities or regions with economic development
  • attend meetings of various government, community, and business groups
  • prepare, maintain, and present financial records and reports
  • oversee support staff and volunteers.
Working Conditions
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Economic development officers work in an office environment. They often are required to attend Council, Committee, or community events and may work longer than the usual 40 hour week. Travel may also be required, if business investment attraction is part of the economic development officer’s responsibilities. Economic development officers may spend extended periods sitting and using office equipment.

  • Strength Required Strength requirements vary
Skills & Abilities
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Economic development officers need the following characteristics:

  • an energetic personality with a strong interest in the community
  • critical thinking and good problem-solving skills
  • the ability to motivate and communicate persuasively in person and in writing
  • the interpersonal skills required to build and maintain professional relationships with others
  • the ability to manage complex projects and work under pressure
  • strong leadership skills.

They should enjoy co-ordinating information, finding innovative ways to handle problems, taking a methodical approach to researching information and dealing with people.

Educational Requirements
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Economic development officers must be knowledgeable in local industries, businesses, municipal land-use and planning legislation. Most employers require applicants to have a post-secondary diploma or degree in a field related to economic development (for example, business administration, urban planning, marketing, economics, or political science) plus one to five years of related experience (for example, experience in urban development, market research, municipal affairs or communications).

A strategic mindset and strong research skills are definite assets. In particular, economic development officers should be able to analyze and condense information in a logical way to be able to provide clear and concise guidance or recommendations.

Certification is also recommended for economic development officers. The available voluntary certifications include:

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Above-average occupational growth is expected in Alberta for 2016 to 2020. Job openings are a result of employment turnover and newly created positions.

Economic development officers work in many sectors of the economy but usually are employed by:

  • municipal, provincial and federal governments and crown corporations
  • development organizations
  • non-government organizations
  • industry associations.

Experienced economic development officers may advance to senior or management positions. Economic development officers with enough experience may also go on to become private consultants.

Economic development officers are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 4163: Business development officers and marketing researchers and consultants. In Alberta, 78% of people employed in this classification work in the following industries:

The employment outlook in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events affecting overall employment  (especially in the industries listed above)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions that never existed before)
  • size of the occupation.

Over 4,400 Albertans are employed in the Business development officers and marketing researchers and consultants occupational group. This group is expected to have an above-average annual growth of 1.8% from 2016 to 2020. As a result, 79 new positions are forecast to be created each year, in addition to job openings created by employment turnover. Note: As economic development officers form only a part of this larger occupational group, only some of these newly created positions will be for economic development officers. 

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated Dec 15, 2016
Business development officers and marketing researchers and consultants
NOC code: 4163

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Starting
Overall
Top
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $24.04 $81.78 $43.22 $36.98
Overall $29.81 $95.67 $51.36 $46.30
Top $34.72 $109.04 $59.22 $49.45

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

A: High Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

High Reliability, represents a CV of less than or equal to 6.00% and 30 survey observations and/or represents 50% or more of all estimated employment for the occupation.


Industry Information
ALBERTA, ALL INDUSTRIES
Public Administration

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

59%
59%

Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties

25%
25%

Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months

3%
3%

2015 Vacancy Rate

2%
Related High School Subjects
  • English Language Arts
  • Languages (other than English)
  • Mathematics
  • Social Studies
  • Business, Administration, Finance and IT
    • Enterprise and Innovation
    • Financial Management
    • Information Processing
    • Management and Marketing
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Business, Management and Administrative Studies
  • Communications
  • Mathematics
  • Social Sciences, Law and Religious Studies
Other Sources of Information
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Economic Developers Alberta website: www.edaalberta.ca

For more information on career planning, education and jobs, visit the Alberta Learning Information Service (ALIS) website, call the Alberta Career Information Hotline toll-free at 1-800-661-3753 or 780-422-4266 in Edmonton, or visit an Alberta Works Centre near you.

Updated Mar 26, 2015. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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