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Key Industry Sectors

Agro-business

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This industry sector is focused on businesses where human capital is the major input: legal services; accounting, tax preparation, bookkeeping and payroll services; architectural, engineering and related services; specialized design services; computer systems design and related services; management, scientific and technical consulting services; scientific research and development services; and advertising, public relations, and related services.

Investment Opportunities

In 2016 (Census Canada), PSTS was the 5th largest sector presence in Okotoks by industry workforce, with an average sector growth rate (2006-2016) compared to other Okotoks industry sectors.

Alberta Facts: 

  • 4th largest output contributor to total PSTS GDP in Canada at $14.1 billion in 2017.
  • 12% of total PSTS workforce in Canada.
  • 7.3% of Alberta’s employed workforce.
  • 4.9% of Alberta’s GDP.
Workforce

1135      Okotoks workforce employed in sector (7.2% of total workforce)

600        Employed in this sector in Okotoks

4665      Okotoks workforce (29.4% of total workforce) educated in PSTS fields

721        PSTS businesses registered in Okotoks (2017)

 71%      sole proprietors (no employees)

 29%       with employees  

Highlights
  •  29.7% of Okotoks’ PSTS workforce is self-employed (AB – 25.4%, CA – 26.2%).
  • 27.2% of Okotoks’ PSTS workforce works from home – the highest percentage of home-based workers and businesses of all sectors in Okotoks.
  • Statistics show that much of the PSTS workforce in Okotoks is entrepreneurial, with the potential to grow their businesses within the community.
  • Hub for surrounding towns and agriculture oriented communities for niche animal services such as farm animal research and consulting.
  • Many choose to live in Okotoks due to the quality of life the town offers as well as the benefits that come from living in a mid-sized, urban center. All necessary amenities are close by, the foothills and mountains just a stones throw away, and the town has a strong community vibe.
  • Fibre to all home and business premises (TELUS, 2018, $60 M investment)
Co-Work Options Available

Co-working spaces offer more flexible space that can help a business thrive and grow – particularly for start-up entrepreneurs, freelancers, small business owners, and remote digital workers. 

  • Foothills Business Incubator (Highwood Community Futures) – downtown location offering 10 fully-furnished, private business offices available with short-term, flexible use terms while businesses are starting up or expanding. Includes boardroom and free wifi. Website
  • Other options for space include privately owned businesses who are offering space. Check out: (insert link to cowork space on web site).
Regional

The Town serves over 250,000 people from surrounding towns and rural area, and Calgary is only 20 minutes away with a population of 1.5 million.

Nearby post-secondary institutions that offer programs that support a highly skilled work force.

  • Bow Valley College has a campus in Okotoks and offers a variety of business related courses.
  • University of Calgary is the second largest provincial university and includes the  faculties of Environmental Design, Law, Veterinary Medicine, Haskayne School of Business and Schulich School of Engineering.
  • Mount Royal University's mission is excellence in undergraduate degrees, and is home to the Bissett School of Business.   
  • Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) offers more than 100 programs in technology, trades and business, offering practical experience and theoretical knowledge in such areas as civil engineering, electrical engineering, instrumentation engineering, and many more.
Wages

A comparison of hourly wages in Alberta is available here