The Quebec government’s work-family balance certification initiative is similar to the environmental seals of approval that various groups hand out to businesses meeting or surpassing a set of green standards.
Companies, public organizations and other groups in Quebec can apply for work-family certification on a scale of one to four, four being the highest level. For a level-one rating, an organization must be awarded between 30 and 44 points. For a level four, 75 points or more.
Points are awarded from a long menu of implemented measures. If a business has a flexible work schedule it is accorded seven to nine points, while a shorter work week also nets seven to nine points.
Firms that offer staff financial or other aid for daycare get four points, while those that accommodate work-from-home agreements receive two to three points.
The standards are overseen by the Bureau de normalisation du Québec, the provincial standards body accredited by the Standards Council of Canada. They were agreed upon by a 12-member committee of employer, employee and public interest groups.