Who are Canada’s Top 100 Employers?
Quite simply, they are the best that set the standard for doing business in Canada. They have built exceptional organizations where best practices are the norm, where progressive and innovative programs push the boundaries to make the workplace better for their people. For instance, Export Development Canada in Ottawa features a new wellness program offering staff free confidential health screenings and Vancouver-based Telus Corp. is piloting an emotional support app enabling employees to connect with trained professionals 24/7. Top employers treat their employees well.
All 100 invest in their employees’ individual growth by offering opportunities for career development with in-house training and support for ongoing learning. For many employers, this extends to tuition subsidies at outside institutions, such as Verafin Inc. in St. John’s that offers grants for courses both related and unrelated to an employee’s current role.
Why does this competition matter?
Through example, the leading 100 encourage other Canadian organizations to continually evolve in their day-to-day operations. Contestants are judged to a high standard in multiple categories against peers in their own industry. Increasingly, that higher standard is what millennials and Gen Z already expect from employers. It’s not enough to pay lip service to diversity, community involvement and work-life balance. You must be authentic. Especially, with the growing awareness of environmental concerns, there is a demand that organizations mitigate the impact of their business as well. Younger workers want an employer that goes beyond the required minimums.
Why enter Canada’s Top 100 Employers?
Certainly, winning enhances an employer’s public reputation and attracts investors. The competition is also invaluable as a recruiting tool for top talent in a tightening market. Discerning job seekers will seek out your organization as a place where they can launch and secure a career, not just land a job. The time and effort involved offer huge rewards.
While the selection process to choose the winners of Canada’s Top Employers continually evolves to include new questions that reflect changes in the workplace, the underlying methodology has not changed significantly since the project began in 2000. The competition is and remains a catalogue of best practices.
To select the winners, the editors of Canada's Top 100 Employers compare each organization's policies to others in their industry and region and examine their leadership qualities. Each employer's application is judged by rigorous criteria in eight key areas: (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.
Canada’s Top 100 Employers is an annual national competition. Any employer with its head office or principal place of business in Canada may apply regardless of size, whether private or public sector.
Canada’s Top 100 Employers 2020
3M Canada Company, London, Ont. Technology manufacturing; 1,931 employees. Offers a variety of events and celebrations organized by its volunteer social club, including an in-house Amazing Race event and outdoor movie nights.
Aboriginal Peoples Television Network Inc. / APTN, Winnipeg. Television broadcasting; 142 employees. Introduced bi-weekly onsite visits by a reflexologist, massage therapist and cranial sacral therapist.
Accenture Inc., Toronto. Professional services; 5,122 employees. Invests in the development of its workforce, spending approximately $3,100 per person on training in the past year.
AccorHotels, Toronto. Hotels; 9,655 employees. Supports families with older kids through a generous academic scholarship program, up to $5,000 per child.
Adobe Systems Canada Inc., Ottawa. Software publishers; 321 employees. Offers formal mentoring and a Women’s Executive Shadow Program giving female employees an opportunity to shadow a key leader in the company for the day.
Agriculture Financial Services Corp. / AFSC, Lacombe, Alta. Financial services; 522 employees. Provides up to 10 paid days off each year for elder care, family illness and travel and for personal leave time.
Air Canada, Saint-Laurent, Que. Air transportation; 28,889 employees. Offers travel discount plans that extend to family members and friends.
Alberta Health Services / AHS, Edmonton. Healthcare; 47,204 employees. Offers access to a fully equipped onsite fitness facility complete with an indoor track, indoor climbing wall and an outdoor court for sports.
ArcelorMittal Dofasco G.P., Hamilton. Iron and steel mills; 5,149 employees. Supports long-term personal and professional development through generous tuition subsidies (up to $24,000) for courses related and unrelated to an employee’s current position.
Bank of Canada, Ottawa. Central bank; 1,745 employees. Offers retirement planning assistance, a defined benefit pension plan and a health benefits plan that includes retiree premium coverage and no age limit.
BASF Canada Inc., Mississauga. Chemical manufacturing; 1,189 employees. Offers the convenience of an onsite daycare facility, operated by an independent daycare provider, for head office employees.
BC Public Service, Victoria. Provincial government; 30,283 employees.
Invests in ongoing employee development with tuition subsidies for job-related courses as well as subsidies for professional accreditation.
Bell Canada, Verdun, Que. Telecommunications; 38,606 employees. Helps employees prioritize their own health and wellness with a dedicated site on the company’s intranet providing related articles, videos and training.
Best Buy Canada Ltd., Burnaby, B.C. Retail; 5,600 employees. Maintains a charitable program connecting youth with technology to benefit their education, awarding over $210,000 in grants to 25 schools across Canada last year.
British Columbia Investment Management Corp. / BCI, Victoria. Portfolio management; 475 employees. Offers secure and heated parking for cyclists, day-use lockers, and a Zen room on each floor where employees can take a quiet break.
Business Development Bank of Canada, Montreal. Secondary market financing; 2,338 employees. Launched a three-year mental health and wellness strategy in partnership with the Canadian Mental Health Association.
Canada Energy Regulator, Calgary. Federal government, regulation of oil, gas and electric utility industries; 485 employees. Offers new moms a full year of maternity and parental leave top-up payments as well as 35 weeks for new dads and adoptive parents.
Canada Revenue Agency / CRA, Ottawa. Federal government; 43,577 employees. Offers a variety of alternative work options, including flexible hours, telecommuting, shortened and compressed workweeks.
Canadian National Railway, Montreal. Railroad transportation; 18,116 employees. Cultivates an ownership mentality through a share purchase plan, available to all employees.
Canadian Nuclear Laboratories Ltd., Chalk River, Ont. Nuclear technology, construction and engineering support services; 3,258 employees. Encourages employees to get involved in the community with paid volunteer time.
Capital One Canada, Toronto. Credit card issuing; 1,383 employees. Offers a variety of health and wellness initiatives, including regular health risk assessments and lunch and learn sessions on topics such as stress and healthy eating.
Cargill Ltd., Winnipeg. Food and agricultural products; 7,522 employees.
Supports ongoing personal and professional development with tuition subsidies for courses taken at outside institutions.
CBC / Radio-Canada, Ottawa. Broadcasting; 7,287 employees. Offers the option to apply for self-funded leaves of absence, up to 12 months in duration.
CIBC, Toronto. Banking; 35,826 employees. Takes a leadership role in organizing national initiatives such as the Canadian Cancer Society CIBC Run for the Cure.
Cisco Systems Canada Co., Toronto. Computer and equipment manufacturing; 1,784 employees. Supports an employee-led civic council, which is a cross-functional team of employees who direct volunteer work and charitable giving across Canada.
College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia, The, Vancouver. Professional organizations; 133 employees. Encourages employees to keep fit with free access to a fully equipped shared-use fitness facility.
CWB National Leasing Inc., Winnipeg. Sales financing; 402 employees. Inspires employees with over 230 original pieces of original art throughout head office as well as visiting artists creating new works onsite.
Danone Canada, Boucherville. Food manufacturing; 498 employees. Encourages employees to become recruiters for the company with new employee referral bonuses.
Desjardins Group / Mouvement des caisses Desjardins, Lévis. Que. Credit union; 40,137 employees. Helps employees prepare for life after work with retirement planning assistance and phased-in retirement work options when nearing retirement.
Diamond Schmitt Architects Inc., Toronto. Architecture; 286 employees. Encourages employees to be active in their local communities by providing matching charitable donations along with paid time off to volunteer.
Digital Extremes Ltd., London, Ont. Software publishers; 305 employees. Maintains a busy social calendar to engage employees with one another including Friday morning breakfasts with the president.
Emera Inc., Halifax. Electric power generation and distribution and gas distribution; 2,342 employees. Offers an onsite full-service cafeteria and a rooftop patio and seating overlooking the Harbour.
Employment and Social Development Canada, Gatineau. Federal government; 26,460 employees. Offers subsidized onsite daycare for employees working at the organization’s Gatineau head office.
Enbridge Inc., Calgary. Natural gas distribution; 8,152 employees. Builds tomorrow’s workforce through in-house apprenticeships and skilled trades and mentoring programs.
ESIT Advanced Solutions Inc., Victoria. Computer systems design services; 480 employees. Encourages employees to leave the car at home by offering a secure bicycle storage lock-up.
Export Development Canada, Ottawa. International trade financing and support; 1,699 employees. Constructed its 18-storey head office to meet LEED Gold standards and designed it with employee feedback in mind.
Fidelity Canada, Toronto. Portfolio management; 1,084 employees. Offers a generous IVF subsidy when required and follows-up with exceptional maternity and parental leave top-up payments, including adoptive parents.
Finning International Ltd., Vancouver. Heavy equipment dealers; 5,364 employees. Offers free memberships to an onsite shared-use fitness facility that features instructor-led classes such as yoga.
Ford Motor Company of Canada, Ltd., Oakville, Ont. Automobile manufacturing; 7,641 employees. Offers generous discounts on new vehicles through a formal new vehicle purchase plan.
Galvanize, Vancouver. Custom computer programming services; 284 employees. Head office provides over 125 alternative workspaces and options to encourage movement as well as employee collaboration and communication.
Graham Group, Calgary. Industrial construction; 1,099 employees. Provides new employees with three weeks of paid vacation to start and considers previous work experience when setting individual vacation entitlements.
GSK / GlaxoSmithKline Inc., Mississauga. Medicinal and botanical manufacturing; 2,116 employees. Has a defined contribution pension plan as well as a matching RSP program, profit sharing for some employees and a year-end bonus program.
Hatch Ltd., Mississauga. Engineering; 3,165 employees. Hosts an annual health and wellness day every November featuring a variety of exhibitors and onsite clinics.
Hospital for Sick Children, The, Toronto. Hospitals; 5,877 employees. Offers long-serving employees up to a maximum of seven weeks of paid vacation.
House of Commons Administration, Ottawa. Legislative bodies; 2,021 employees. Offers in-house and online training initiatives as well as full tuition subsidies for courses at outside institutions.
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, Ottawa. Federal government; 5,374 employees. Launched an interdepartmental pilot project at their head office, supporting the development of the federal public service’s mental health strategy.
Irving Oil, Saint John. Petroleum refining, distribution and retail; 2,802 employees. Manages flagship community programs in support of families, the environment and education.
ISM Canada, Regina. Information technology services; 801 employees. Helps its employees plan for life after work through defined benefit and defined contribution pension plans.
Ivanhoé Cambridge Inc., Montreal. Real estate investment and management; 1,083 employees. Offers a formal wellness program that provides everything from financial planning sessions to online discussions with nutrition experts.
Kellogg Canada Inc., Mississauga. Breakfast cereal manufacturing; 320 employees. Supports employee affinity groups, such as the Diversity and Inclusion Council and Women of Kellogg that organize their own company sponsored events.
Keurig Dr Pepper Canada, Montreal. Coffee distribution and brewing equipment; 1,481 employees. Launched a new in-house automated learning system designed to let employees more easily manage their own career development.
Keyera Corp., Calgary. Crude petroleum and natural gas extraction; 1,029 employees. Offers a health spending account equivalent to 4.5 per cent of their salary plus an additional $3,500 each year.
KPMG LLP, Toronto. Accounting; 7,648 employees. Maintains a Working Parents Network for parents with young children and recently launched a Special Parents Network to support parents of children with special needs.
K+S Potash Canada GP, Saskatoon. Potash mining; 418 employees. Provides indoor bicycle storage and shower stalls along with heated underground parking for car commuters.
Labatt Brewing Company Ltd., Toronto. Breweries; 3,500 employees. Features at head office include the 20,000 square foot John Labatt Hall, with table hockey, dartboards, multiple big screen TVs, gaming consoles and great views over Lake Ontario.
Laurentide Controls Ltd., Kirkland, Que. Process control equipment and services; 252 employees. Offers the next generation opportunities to gain career-level experience through paid internships, summer student roles and co-op placements.
Left Technologies Inc., Maple Ridge, B.C. Software development; 45 employees. Actively encourage employees to use their vacation days or lose them and offers an unlimited number of community service days.
Loblaw Companies Ltd., Brampton, Ont. Supermarkets and grocery stores; 27,488 employees. Donated over 900 kilograms of food and over $3.4-million to food banks across the country last year.
L’Oréal Canada Inc., Montreal. Cosmetics manufacturing; 1,479 employees. Updated its flexible work policies to including up to four days of working from home each month and introduced a new work from “anywhere” policy with corresponding new supporting technology.
Mars Inc., Bolton, Ont. Food manufacturing; 1,502 employees. Offers a bring your dog to work policy including Pet-ernity leave, allowing employees up to eight hours off for a new cat or dog.
Mattamy Homes Ltd., Toronto. Real estate; 1,375 employees. Features an onsite daycare at head office that also offers emergency short-term daycare services.
McCarthy Tétrault LLP, Toronto. Law firm; 1,509 employees. Allows employees to leave one hour early every Friday from the May long weekend through to Labour Day.
Médecins Sans Frontières / Doctors Without Borders (MSF) Canada, Toronto. Medical relief organization; 239 employees. Offers employees a generous health spending account, up to $5,000, and maintains in-house wellness programming.
Modern Niagara Group Inc., Kanata, Ont. Engineering; 2,369 employees. Provides a range of social activities, including ski days, dragon boat racing and an annual province-wide hockey tournament between the company’s various offices.
NAV CANADA, Ottawa. Air traffic control; 5,201 employees. Manages a Points of Pride program to recognize the company’s exceptional performers.
Nutrien, Saskatoon. Agriculture fertilizer manufacturing; 5,734 employees. Supported over 2,500 charities and community organizations in the past year, focusing on food solutions, youth and education, health and safety and community building.
PCL Construction, Edmonton. Commercial and institutional construction; 2,854 employees. Provides a variety of learning opportunities, including the PCL College of Construction, in-house apprenticeships, formal mentoring, and the PCL Leadership Academy.
Pembina Pipeline Corp., Calgary. Natural gas distribution; 1,879 employees. Offers a health and wellness spending account, allowing employees to adjust levels of coverage to suit their personal needs.
PepsiCo Canada, Mississauga. Soft drink and food manufacturing; 10,171 employees. Manages a number of awards programs for exceptional performance, including the Lean Forward Awards for employees who excel in demonstrating the company’s five core behaviours.
Procter & Gamble Inc., Toronto. Consumer product manufacturing; 1,619 employees. Cultivates a culture of appreciation through an award program where employees can recognize others instantly through a mobile app and give peer-to-peer awards.
ResMed Halifax ULC, Halifax. Custom computer programming services; 214 employees. Allows employees to balance personal and professional commitments with telecommuting and flexible work hour options.
R.F. Binnie & Associates Ltd., Burnaby, B.C. Engineering; 235 employees. Encourages employees to recruit their friends with generous new employee referral bonuses.
Rio Tinto, Montreal. Diversified mining and metals manufacturing; 10,581 employees. Offers the convenience of onsite daycare at its head office.
Rogers Communications Inc., Toronto. Telecommunications, cable, publishing and subscription programming; 22,482 employees. Introduced a phased return to work program for new parents, allowing a modified schedule for the first five weeks while receiving 100 per cent of their salary.
Royal Bank of Canada, Toronto. Banking; 56,575 employees. Published the RBC Blueprint for Mental Health and Wellbeing, which outlines its vision for promoting the mental health and well-being of all employees.
RSA Canada Group, Toronto. Insurance; 2,787 employees. Offers a Wellness Club, which organizes everything from office stretch breaks to wellness seminars and nutrition and weight consultations.
Salesforce, Toronto. Customer relationship management (CRM) services; 1,417 employees. Increased maternity and parental leave top-up payments for mothers, fathers and adoptive parents and offers adoptive parents a subsidy to help cover related costs.
Samsung Electronics Canada Inc., Mississauga. Communications equipment manufacturing; 577 employees. Organizes an annual Wellness Fair to promote healthy, balanced living as well as a number of mental health awareness campaigns.
Sanofi Canada, Laval, Que. Pharmaceutical manufacturing, 1,957 employees. Offers a variety of flexible working arrangements including compressed workweeks, telecommuting and paid personal days off.
SaskTel, Regina. Telecommunications; 2,839 employees. Manages a unique Helping Our Own People program to support employees whose needs cannot be addressed by traditional health benefits plans.
Schneider Electric Canada Inc., Mississauga. Industrial automation and controls; 2,067 employees. Organizes a dedicated Learning Week featuring classroom and online training on topics such as retirement planning, company products, and mental health at work.
Sekisui Diagnostics PEI Ltd., Charlottetown. Medical diagnostic products; 130 employees. Offers tuition subsidies for job-related courses and subsidies for professional accreditation.
Shopify Inc., Ottawa. Cloud software development; 3,667 employees. Offers a basic health benefits plan plus an additional $5,000 which can be put towards a health or wellness spending account, a charitable giving account or retirement savings.
Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, B.C. Universities; 3,105 employees. Offers resources to help create awareness of diversity and inclusion on campus, including training on intercultural foundations, gender identity and gender expression, and unconscious bias.
Stryker Canada ULC, Waterdown, Ont. Medical equipment and supplies wholesalers; 396 employees. Offers training and development opportunities at every career stage, from global mentoring to a future leaders academy for high potential individuals.
Suncor Energy Inc., Calgary. Crude petroleum and natural gas extraction; 11,618 employees. Extends its health benefits plan to retirees, with no age limit and 100 per cent premium coverage.
TD Bank Group, Toronto. Banking; 52,060 employees. Maintains a Flexible Work Options Business Committee for each line of business to help ensure appropriate work options are implemented and supported across the company.
Teck Resources Ltd., Vancouver. Mining; 8,433 employees. Helps employees prepare for the future with a defined contribution pension plan, retirement planning assistance, and phased-in work options where operationally feasible.
Telus Communications Inc., Vancouver. Telecommunications; 22,812 employees. Utilizes health risk analytics to provide specific support to employees based on job function, age and gender, generation, stage of life and population health risks.
Thomson Reuters Canada Ltd., Toronto. Publishers; 1,327 employees. Manages an enterprise-wide recognition program called Appreciate to celebrate employee achievements in four categories: effort, milestones, results and spotlight excellence.
Toronto, City of, Toronto. Municipal government; 22,002 employees. Offers onsite daycare at City Hall when new parents return to work as well as a variety of flexible working arrangements.
Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada Inc. / TMMC, Cambridge, Ont. Automobile manufacturing; 9,722 employees. Encourages employees to volunteer in the community with paid time off, matching employee charitable donations and financial donations for employees who volunteer their time.
Université de Montréal, Montreal. Universities; 5,418 employees. Organizes the peer-nominated Rector’s Awards to recognize employees in five categories, including inspiration, initiative, commitment, collaboration and diversity.
University of New Brunswick / UNB, Fredericton. Universities; 1,754 employees. Offers a variety of on-campus amenities including a cafeteria with healthy and special diet menus, a quiet room and subsidized access to its state-of-the art fitness facility.
University of Toronto, Toronto. Universities; 10,116 employees. Provides workshops, discussion groups and access to wide range of resources through a dedicated Family Care Office.
Verafin Inc., St. John’s. Specialized financial software; 384 employees. Encourages ongoing learning and development with tuition subsidies for courses both related and unrelated to an employees’ current role.
West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd., Vancouver. Sawmills; 5,622 employees. Designates a portion of its pre-tax profits to charitable and community giving and follows a “give where we live” approach.
World Vision Canada, Mississauga. Charitable organizations; 481 employees. Offers new employees three weeks of paid vacation to start and allows employees to purchase up to 10 additional vacation days.
Xerox Canada Ltd., North York, Ont. Computer technology and services; 2,376 employees. Helps address workforce representation and employee concerns and needs through its Diversity Council and seven Caucus groups, including The Women’s Alliance and GALAXe Pride at Work.
Yukon, Government of, Whitehorse. Territorial government; 4,694 employees. Allows new parents to apply to extend their leave into an unpaid leave of absence.
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