Canada’s top employers in 2024
MediaCorp has released its list of winners for 2024's “100 top employers in Canada” competition.
The annual event (which has been running since the year 2000) continues to not just garner wide-spread attention in Canada, but also shapes the employment searches of Canadians and newcomers alike. The competition aims to recognise employers that lead their industries in “offering exceptional workplaces for their employees”.
What are the selection criteria?
Any business with a head office or principal place of business in Canada may apply to the competition. The competition is based on eight selection factors. Employers are compared to other organisations in their industry to see which ones have the most progressive policies and given a letter grade between A and F in each of the below categories:
- Work atmosphere and social factors;
- Health financial and family benefits;
- Vacation and time off;
- Employee communications;
- Performance management;
- Training and skills development; and
- Community involvement.
A note on receiving work permit sponsorship from employers
Depending on the type of work permit that one has, any of these companies could aid newcomers in building eligibility for economic pathways to permanent residence (PR). It is useful to keep in mind that most economic pathways require at least one year of continuous, skilled work experience in Canada to be eligible for these programs (like Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) or Express Entry-managed programs).
A key aspect in this is if a newcomer has an open or closed (Labour Market Impact Assessment-based) work permit. An open work permit allows individuals to work in most industries and for most employers, without the work permit being tied to any specific employer. A Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)-based work permit only allows holders to work for one employer in an industry and must be supported by a positive or neutral LMIA result.
Special highlights from 2024’s top employers
Financial compensation is often the foundation of a job search. To score well in this category, employers needed to offer a range of compensation benefits including participation in salary surveys, regular salary reviews, long-term saving and financial planning options, year-end bonuses, referral bonuses (for employees referring new hires), and more.
For 2024 the employers that scored the highest (A+) in this category were as follows:
- Business Development Bank of Canada;
- Canadian Aviation Electronics Inc;
- Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC);
- Enbridge Inc.;
- Provincial Credit Union Ltd.;
- Royal Bank of Canada;
- Schneider Electric Canada Inc; and
- TD Bank Group.
Notable school employment
For many international graduates looking for their first job in Canada, working for their educational institution can be an easy transition into working life. This year, the following five schools featured in the top 100 employers:
- Carleton University—Carleton is noted for its extensive healthcare programs for employees, which includes 100% premium healthcare coverage for all employees (including retirees), and an extensive “Healthy Workplace” initiative that promotes physical and mental health. In addition, employees are given extensive vacation time and paid holiday closures at the end of the year.
- College of Physicians and Surgeons, British Columbia (B.C.)—The College of Physicians and Surgeons B.C. offers a flexible statutory holiday policy, allowing employees to swap up to three statutory holidays with other days of personal, cultural or religious significance to them. In addition, the college provides progressive maternity and parental leave pay, allowing up to 75% of employees’ salary for 52 or 37 weeks respectively.
- Simon Fraser University—In addition to starting employees with four weeks of paid vacation time, Simon Fraser University employees have access to extensive healthcare facilities in one of the country’s most unique campuses, atop Burnaby Mountain. These include a swimming pool, racquetball courts, indoor soccer, a climbing wall, personal fitness consultations, and various instructor-led courses for dance, yoga and martial arts.
- Université de Montréal—In addition to offering hybrid work options and extensive health benefits—including no waiting periods for coverage, nutrition planning, and strong mental health coverage—the Université de Montréal also boasts extensive skill-building options for employees, including an online skills inventory, mentoring and in-house training programs, and tuition subsidies for courses both related and unrelated to an employee’s job.
- University of New Brunswick (UNB)—UNB is noted for strong financial benefits and compensation, including outside salary reviews, long-term pension benefits, and even signing bonuses for some positions. However, where UNB scores highly in this year’s rankings, is in its training and skills development support; which offers tuition subsidies, as well as educational leave, and even financial bonuses for course completions.
Work abroad options
Another key aspect of work-life balance for many newcomers may be the flexibility to work remotely, or even abroad, while they visit their home country. This year’s top employers list also covered businesses with progressive work abroad options. Some of the top scorers included:
- Procter & Gamble (P&G) Canada—P&G manages a flexible work program known as “work-ways”. Under this policy, employees are encouraged to work with their managers to design hybrid and remote work options that fit their needs while meeting the demands of the business. This arrangement includes a work-from-home allowance, and the ability to work abroad.
- British Columbia Investment Management Corp. (BCI)—BCI’s work abroad options feature a “Work from Anywhere” policy to enable employees to work remotely from around the world for up to one month a year (which can be further divided into smaller segments throughout the year). Uniquely, the company also has a “Talking to Strangers” program, which ensures employees stay connected to each other even when working remotely.
- Fowler Bauld & Mitchell Ltd. (FBM)—FBM has had a longstanding policy of remote work options for employees, including hybrid work options, flexible work hours and even a compressed work week that offers four-day work weeks and extended weekends.
- Bank of Canada (BoC)—Featuring flexible work hours, BoC’s remote work options are designed to help alleviate family or community pressures that employees may face during the start of their workdays. In addition, BoC also has a “work from away” policy that allows employees to work up to six weeks per year from abroad, at approved Canadian or International locations.
Unique perks and work environments
- Mars Canada’s head office in Toronto boasts an extensive work set-up, with indoor and outdoor dog parks, a community garden, a maple syrup bush (that is tapped every spring), volleyball, basketball courts, a hockey rink, and further amenities.
- Binder Dijker Otte (BDO) Canada offers employees a “Do What You Love” program, which includes taxable reimbursements of up to $1,350 CAD for all manner of personal undertakings, including travel-related expenses, concert/sporting event tickets, recreational admissions, cooking classes and more.
- Harper Collins Canada Ltd. and Harlequin Enterprises ULC has an immersive work environment that features multiple author events, Halloween costume contests, sit-stand workstations, and a “bookstop” where employees can borrow books for free, among other amenities.
To access the full list of Canada’s top employers for 2024, click here.