Getting up every day for 40+ years and going to work for eight or more hours a day pays the bills, but it can become tedious and repetitive. However, if you work for a great employer that is constantly reviewing compensation, benefits and employee engagement levels in order to attract and retain the best and the brightest, work can be a much more pleasurable experience.
One way to identify a top-notch employer is to keep an eye out for organizations that are recognized as leading employers in various lists published from time to time. For example, take a look at Canada’s Top 100 Employers published by Mediacorp Canada since 2000 and spinoffs such Canada’s Top Employers for Young People and Saskatchewan’s Top Employers.
First published in 2006, Saskatchewan’s Top Employers recognizes the Saskatchewan employers that lead their industries in offering exceptional places to work. The 2017 winners were announced this past April in a special magazine published by the Regina Leader-Post and Saskatoon StarPhoenix.
Employers are evaluated by the editors of Canada’s Top 100 Employers using the same eight criteria as the national competition:
(1) Physical workplace.
(2) Work atmosphere and social.
(3) Health, financial and family benefits.
(4) Vacation and time off.
(5) Employee communications.
(6) Performance management.
(7) Training and skills development, and
(8) Community involvement.
Companies are compared to other organizations in their field to determine which offers the most progressive and forward-thinking programs. You can find the 2017 Saskatchewan list here, but featured below is information collected by Mediacorp about just five of these notable Saskatchewan employers.
Access Communications Co-operative Ltd.
This cable and communications company with 215 employees has locations in Saskatoon, Regina and nine other towns in the province.
- In addition to 3 weeks of starting vacation allowance, Access Communications recognizes previous work experience when setting individual vacation entitlements for experienced candidates and provides 3 paid personal days off to help employees balance their work and personal lives.
- Access Communications supports its new and adoptive moms with maternity leave top-up payments (to 100% of salary for up to 17 weeks).
- Access Communications supports ongoing employee development with tuition subsidies and a variety of in-house training programs — and offers the next generation opportunities to gain on-the-job experience through paid internships and co-op placements.
ClearTech Industries Inc.
Cleartech distributes chemicals and equipment. It has facilities in Port Coquitlam BC, Saskatoon SK and Edmonton AB with a total of about 145 employees.
- ClearTech Industries lets everyone share in the fruits of their labours with a profit-sharing plan and also encourages long-term savings through a defined contribution pension plan.
- ClearTech Industries invests in the long-term development of its employees through tuition subsidies for job-related courses, in-house training initiatives and financial bonuses for some course completions.
- ClearTech Industries’ employee social committee organizes a number of events through the year, including a Christmas party, family barbecue and golf tournament, weekly treat days and summer “Rider Day” barbecue.
The Mosaic Company
Fertilizer manufacturing company Mosaic has its head office in the U.S. but Saskatchewan branches in Regina, Belle Plaine, Colonsay and Estherhazy with 2,250+ Canadian employees.
- Mosaic helps employees build their skills through a variety of in-house training options and generous tuition subsidies for courses directly related to their positions (up to $10,000).
- Varying by employee group Mosaic employees share in a range of excellent financial benefits including a defined contribution pension program, matching RSP contributions, year-end bonuses, new employee referral bonuses (up to $1,000) and profit sharing for salaried positions. The company also offers retirement planning assistance services for all employees.
- Mosaic ensured that architects consulted directly with employees in the design of their new head offices in downtown Regina. The modern head office is located on the top 4 floors of one of the tallest and newest buildings in the city, complete with a rooftop patio and a theatre-style conference centre plus convenient access to a shared-use fitness facility
Innovation Credit Union
Innovation Credit Union with branches in North Battleford, Swift Current, Meadow Lake and Regina has 325+ employees.
- Innovation Credit Union offers employees a range of financial benefits including discounted financial services, new employee referral bonuses (up to $1,750), retirement planning services and a defined contribution pension plan.
- Innovation Credit Union invests in the long-term development of its employees through tuition subsidies for courses that are both related and indirectly related to their current position.
- Innovation Credit Union and its employees support approximately 250 charitable and community organizations every year. The credit union’s charitable focus includes initiatives that support arts and culture, business, charity, community, education, and sports and youth.
Saskatchewan Research Counsel
Three hundred and forty-four employees conduct research activities in Prince Albert, Saskatoon, Regina, Uranium City and Calgary AB.
- Saskatchewan Research Council provides maternity and parental leave top-up payments for employees who are new mothers or adoptive parents, up to 95% of salary for up to 17 weeks.
- Employees working at Saskatchewan Research Council’s head office can take advantage of a number of onsite amenities including a cafeteria with healthy and special diet menus, a fully-stocked employee lounge and shared access to an onsite fitness facility, complete with sauna, squash courts and instructor-led classes
- In addition to 3.6 weeks of starting vacation allowance, Saskatchewan Research Council offers up to 15 paid personal days off to help employees balance personal commitments.
Check out the websites of these and other top Saskatchewan employers to see if they are hiring. In addition, make note of the enriched programs these top Saskatchewan employers offer if you are evaluating other employers when you are looking for work in the province.
|Written by Sheryl Smolkin|
|Sheryl Smolkin LLB., LLM is a retired pension lawyer and President of Sheryl Smolkin & Associates Ltd. For over a decade, she has enjoyed a successful encore career as a freelance writer specializing in retirement, employee benefits and workplace issues. Sheryl and her husband Joel are empty-nesters, residing in Toronto with their cockapoo Rufus.|