*SME = small and medium sized enterprises from 1-499 employees


  • From coast to coast, a new network of small to medium-sized enterprises (SME’s) is building. Solving post-COVID workforce challenges from recruiting to hiring to retention, this initiative is drawing together business leaders for some very key conversations.
  • In Design Labs held once a quarter from August 2022 to March 2023 – a select cadre of SMEs across Canada is now co-creating and testing solutions that will help support the backbone of Canada’s economy – businesses like yours, employing between 1 – 499. In fact, 85% of Canada’s economy is generated by SMEs.


  • The Conference Board of Canada, in cooperation with the Immigrant Employment Councils across Canada, will be including SME feedback and recommendations to decision-makers.
  • Understanding the regional needs of SMEs will help inspire new program innovations, build better policies and strengthen labour market outcomes for internationally trained professionals.
  • Specifically, this is about formalizing strategic partnerships into a collaborative network to further advance the collective, forward-thinking leadership that Canadian business leaders provide.
  • CRIEC is the designated partner to facilitate Calgary’s series of Design Labs, and report our findings back into the national network. Each business has appointed a designated spokesperson (HR or C-Suite) with a curious, collaborative mindset to participate in 4 online, interactive design labs between August 2022 – March 2023, to innovate, explore, and test Design Lab prototypes.


  • Inclusion in an important national business network
  • A crucial role in co-designing engagement and partnership models
  • Collaborative creation of labour force solutions tailored to local needs
  • Address Diversity, Equity and Inclusion challenges
  • Meaningful connections with the settlement sector
  • Mitigate the talent shortage and improve retention
  • Amplify SME voices

For more information, please contact:

Natalie Cote, Manager of Special Projects


For more information or too join our SME network please submit your information below.

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