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Things to Learn from Canada’s Top 100 Employers List of 2016

Attention all Canadian companies: Canada’s Top 100 Employers for 2016 have been released. The annual competition compiled by Mediacorp Canada, now entering into its 17th year, is a national project that showcases exceptional workplaces that set industry leaders apart from the rest. Plus, the 2016 winners have been featured in The Globe and Mail – talk about additional exposure!

How do you get your company to make the list for next year? Excel in the following categories: Physical Workplace; Work Atmosphere & Social; Health, Financial & Family Benefits; Vacation & Time Off; Employee Communications; Performance Management; Training & Skills Development; and Community Involvement.

Wondering what makes a company excel in the above-mentioned areas? We’ve compiled a list of some of the showcased initiatives from 2015 in the list below:

Physical Workplace: no assigned cubicles, a carpool sign-up program, free parking, telecommuter workstations, fireplaces, pool tables, foosball tables, onsite cafeteria, onsite fitness facilities, treadmill workstations, and nap rooms.

Work Atmosphere & Social: employee sports teams, casual Friday, music at work stations, employee recognition, company newsletters, costume contests, holiday parties, and ski trips.

 Health, Financial & Family Benefits: no waiting period for coverage, EAP plans, flexible work hours, telecommuting, employer paying up to 100% of premiums, and a Healthy Workplace/Healthy Mind mental health awareness campaign.

 Vacation & Time Off: additional one day off during the Christmas to New Year’s holiday break, unpaid maximum leave of 12 months,  and the chance to receive 5 paid days off for jury duty.

Employee Engagement: in-house or outside consultant surveys are held every 12 months, peer-to-peer-recognition awards, President’s Award for Outstanding Leadership, individual performance bonuses, unique peer-to-peer electronic thank-you notes, awards for years of service.

Training & Skills Development:  mentoring, in-house training, online training, leadership training, paid internships, tuition subsidiaries, and executive leadership development programs.

Community Involvement: matching employee donations, employees receive paid time off to volunteer, company-wide initiatives to help local charities.

If you’d like to score in these categories in order to set your company on a path to employment excellence, follow some of these guidelines below.

Define your culture

We’ve mentioned the role of corporate culture in a number of previous blog posts, as the topic is covered by media outlets and leading conferences to reinforce the notion to us all that corporate culture matters. Does your company have a definite corporate culture that they identify with? Do all leaders subscribe to that mentality? If not, defining a direction and core values is the first step.

Get feedback

If companies wish to change for the better, they need to find opportunities for advancement and growth. Surveying stakeholders and employees will provide senior leaders with the incentive to change what isn’t working or strengthen the areas that have the potential for success.

Do research

Look into what top companies, like Canada’s Top 100 Employers, are subscribing to. If the value adds like nap rooms and treadmill workstations are items that would fit into your idea of corporate culture, make plans to make smaller integrations to benefit employees in the long-term. Guides like Canada’s Top 100 Employers are there to highlight best practices, so take a look at some of the initiatives that these leaders are spearheading and figure out where you can begin to make changes based on the feedback you’ve been given and the direction you’d like to take.

Start implementing

If you’re making a commitment to changing your culture or identifying key practices, make changes and follow through with them. Employees will be waiting for your direction, so implementing your changes will show them that you’re paving the way to a brighter future for all.

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