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Free webinar offers practical steps to address workplace mental health

April 26, 2017

Organizations are planning their activities and programs for North American Occupational Health and Safety (NAOSH) Week that runs from May 7 to 13. As part of their NAOSH program, the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) will be hosting a free, live webinar that provides a practical approach to addressing mental health in the workplace. The live webinar, Steps to a Mentally Healthy Workplace, will be held on Thursday, May 11, 2017, from 1:00 p.m. – 1:45 p.m. EDT. This webinar will provide participants with an overview of the tools and resources an organization needs to create and implement a comprehensive healthy workplace program. A recorded session of the webinar will be made available after the live event, and can be watched on-demand. More information on how to register is available on the CCOHS website.



Winners of Canada's Greenest Employers for 2017 are announced

April 25, 2017

Canada's Greenest Employers is an editorial competition that recognizes the employers that lead the nation in creating a culture of environmental awareness. The winning employers, selected by the editors of Canada's Top 100 Employers, are evaluated on the following criteria: (1) unique environmental initiatives or programs they have developed; (2) whether they have been successful in reducing their own environmental footprint; (3) whether their employees are involved in these programs and contribute unique skills; and (4) whether their environmental initiatives have become linked to the employer's public identity to attract new people to the organization. CharityVillage would like to congratulate the charities and nonprofit organizations included on this year's list!



Alternative work arrangements becoming the new normal, research suggests

April 18, 2017

Is your office becoming a ghost town? Many work environments may be less crowded, new research from staffing firm The Creative Group suggests. More than three-quarters (76%) of advertising and marketing executives surveyed said their company offers some form of alternative work arrangement. The most common is part-time hours, provided by roughly six in 10 employers (61%). Flextime and telecommuting are available to another 33% and 30% of professionals, respectively. The research shows that employees who work remotely do so an average of three days a week. But advertising and marketing executives who are able to telecommute typically spend only one day a week off-site. Executives ranked part-time hours, flextime and telecommuting as the most important alternative work arrangements for recruiting and retaining creative professionals. But what do employees want? When asked which option they find most appealing, the top response was flextime (37%), followed by telecommuting and a compressed workweek (tied at 26%).



Canadian HR Awards now accepting 2017 nominations

April 6, 2017

The search for Canada’s most innovative HR professionals has begun once again as nominations for the 2017 Canadian HR Awards officially open today. The Canadian HR Awards brings together industry leaders to celebrate excellence in the HR profession, recognizing individuals, teams and companies for their outstanding achievements in people management. This year, twenty awards will be given out individuals, teams, and entire organizations that have demonstrated excellence within a specific HR discipline. The nomination deadline is July 7, 2017.



Winners of Canada's Best Diversity Employers are announced for 2017

March 28, 2017

Now in its 10th year, the Canada's Best Diversity Employers competition recognizes the nation's leaders in creating inclusive workplaces for employees from five diverse groups: women; visible minorities; persons with disabilities; Aboriginal peoples; and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) peoples. The annual competition is open to any employer with its head office or principal place of business in Canada. Employers of any size may apply, whether private or public sector. CharityVillage congratulates the nonprofit and charitable organizations who were recognized on the 2017 list!



New workplace challenge combats sedentary behaviour in the office

March 24, 2017

Today, the Honourable Jane Philpott, Minister of Health, along with Paul Estey, Chief Innovation Officer of Public Inc. announced the launch of Sit Kicker. Sit Kicker is a nationwide initiative focused on encouraging Canadians who work in office settings to reduce sedentary behaviour and "kick the sit" out of their work habits by shifting workplace culture towards more stand-friendly physical work environments. Sit Kicker will encourage employees to participate in a four-week challenge to interrupt sitting every half hour and stand more often. Participating workplaces will be provided with a Sit Kicker tool-kit that includes portable stand-up desks for use with laptops, tablets, phones or other office devices, a companion iPhone/Android Sit Kicker app that enables workers to track their standing time, as well as posters, stickers and other workplace supports. The program is designed to inspire participants to transfer the knowledge, experience and less sedentary habits gained from the Sit Kicker initiative to other parts of their life.



More than half of Canadian managers are annoyed by untidy workspaces

March 23, 2017

Is it time to spring clean your messy desk? More than half of Canadian senior managers (51%) interviewed by staffing firm OfficeTeam said the most distracting or annoying aspect of employee workspaces is sloppiness or disorganization. Senior managers were asked, "Which one of the following, if any, is the most distracting or annoying when it comes to employee workspaces?" Their responses:

  • Having a messy or disorganized workspace (51%)
  • Having too many knickknacks or decorations (28%)
  • Displaying inappropriate or offensive photos or phrases (13%)
  • Having a workspace that's too clean or bare (7%)



MHCC releases implementation findings on National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace

March 16, 2017

The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) released the findings of its three-year Case Study Research Project that tracked 40 Canadian organizations from various industries and sectors as they successfully implemented the National Standard of Canada for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace (the Standard). A global first, the Standard is a "made-in-Canada" set of guidelines, tools and resources to help employers promote mental health and prevent psychological harm at work. The Case Study Research Project findings identify promising practices and lessons learned from these organizations, representing 250,000 employees, which implemented the Standard in 2014. Key findings include:

  • Ninety-one percent of the organizations implemented the Standard because it is "the right thing to do". Other reasons included "to protect the psychological health of employees" (84%) and "increase employee engagement" (72%).
  • Seventy-eight percent implemented respectful workplace policies and educational initiatives.
  • Seventy percent provided early intervention through employee and family assistance programs and services addressing mental health.
  • Sixty-six percent enhanced awareness of mental health among employees.
  • Participating organizations achieved on average 72% compliance with the five elements (commitment and policy, planning, implementation, evaluation and corrective action, management review) in the Standard, a remarkable improvement from 55% compliance at the baseline stage.

In Canada alone, mental health problems and illnesses account for more than one-third of disability claims and two-thirds of disability costs. A recent Ipsos poll found the Standard could be a contributing factor to the overall improvement in the psychological health and safety of Canadian workplaces. For example, employees living with depression who work in an organization using the Standard are missing five fewer days each year from work, according to the survey.



Public input sought on Alberta’s workplace laws

March 15, 2017

Albertans are invited to participate in a review of the province’s labour legislation to ensure fair and family-friendly workplaces that support a strong economy. The review focuses on the Employment Standards Code and the Labour Relations Code, neither of which has undergone significant updates since 1988. These laws cover topics such as hours of work, overtime, general holidays, special leaves and collective bargaining rules. Some of Alberta’s workplace rules are currently out-of-step with the rest of Canada and these areas need to be reviewed.

The public is invited to provide their views and input on Alberta’s workplace laws until April 18, 2017. Albertans can find more information about how to get involved by visiting work.alberta.ca/leg-review. Government is seeking feedback on:

  • Maternity, parental and compassionate care leaves
  • Introducing leave for the care of critically ill children
  • Other job-protected leaves in relation to the federal Employment Insurance program
  • The collective bargaining process
  • Improving enforcement and administration

The reviews will include direct engagement with business and industry associations, trade unions and social agencies over the coming weeks.



Many Canadian workers face a growth gap: ADP Canada poll

March 15, 2017

Four out of ten (40%) working Canadians face a "Growth Gap," saying that their company rarely or never provides them with career development support. Almost equal numbers say they would leave and take a pay cut from another employer that offered better professional development opportunities. These are among the findings of the latest ADP Sentiment Survey, a research series that identifies Canadian workplace trends. Among the 39% who would leave and take a pay cut, almost one-quarter (23%) said they would take five percent less, and more than one in ten (12%) said they would take a 10% salary decrease. Smaller numbers would settle for up to, or more than 15% less pay (4% and 1% respectively).

When asked to explain the cause of their "Growth Gap" at work, the most common reason, cited by one-third of employed Canadians (33%), is that their company doesn't offer this type of support, which typically includes skills development programs, technical training, career mapping or mentoring. Almost two out of ten (19%) say they haven't asked for this type of support, while 14% feel they aren't senior enough to receive it. Close to one in ten (9%) say their boss doesn't have time to address their needs in this respect.



Women for Nature announces Young Leadership Grant call for applications

March 15, 2017

Women for Nature are leaders who care deeply about nature and want to inspire others to make a difference. In particular, they want to encourage, foster and nurture youth (under 30) to demonstrate their leadership for nature. To that end, Women for Nature have established a grant/bursary for a young person to develop and implement a project inspired by some of the objectives in the recently published Nature Playbook. This Women for Nature sponsored grant of $1,000 will support project implementation in the year 2017, in celebration of the role that nature has played in our Canadian culture and identity. Interested applicants should submit either a two page essay or a short video outlining their proposed project. Project ideas will be evaluated by a Women for Nature Grant Bursary Committee based on the following. The deadline for submissions is 5:00 pm (Eastern Time) on March 31st of 2017. Click here for additional eligibility requirements.



Survey suggests Canadian executives aren't making employee engagement a priority

March 14, 2017

Employees' personal commitment to the job is a crucial factor in an organization's success. Yet new research from global staffing firm Robert Half suggests Canadian executives aren't making it a priority. While over half (52%) of CFOs interviewed think their workers are more engaged on the job compared to three years ago, 88% are not concerned about the level of commitment. Recent findings from a separate study help to underscore the point that executives should not take employee engagement — or loyalty — for granted: About one-third of professionals surveyed for a study on worker satisfaction and engagement from Robert Half and Happiness Works indicated that they are considering leaving their jobs in the next six months.



New $10,000 prize helps conservation heroes in financial need

March 13, 2017

Nominations are now open for the inaugural $10,000 Glen Davis Conservation Leadership Prize to honour the slain philanthropist, and to reward a conservation hero in financial need. The Prize was established by WWF-Canada and the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society to be given for the first time on the 10th anniversary year of Glen Davis's death in May, 2017. The Prize will help a worthy candidate do things such as pay the rent and buy groceries, recognizing that conservation activists often experience financial hardship in order to do what they do. The successful candidate will have the one of following characteristics:

  • Played a key role in bringing — or being on the cusp of bringing — meaningful protections to identifiable land or marine ecosystems in Canada.
  • Or led a foundational initiative regarding species or spaces that leaves Canada measurably better off.
  • Have a demonstrated personal financial need.

Nominations accepted at wwf.ca/glendavis until 5 p.m. ET Monday May 1, 2017. Winner announced May 18, 2017.



Congratulations to the nonprofits included in the 2017 BC's Top Employers list

March 9, 2017

Whether you're a weekend warrior, cycling enthusiast or an occasional yogi, BC's leading employers go out of their way to make sure employees' health and lifestyle choices are supported in the workplace. Their HR programs and policies reflect a unique West Coast culture, which creates a highly productive and engaged workforce. The best of these initiatives were recognized today as winners of the BC's Top Employers competition for 2017 were announced by Mediacorp Canada Inc., the publishing firm that manages the annual Canada's Top 100 Employers project. CharityVillage would like to congratulate the nonprofit organizations and charities who made this year's list!



For persons with disabilities in Canada, education is not always an open door: CHRC report

March 9, 2017

People with disabilities in Canada are facing overwhelming barriers and challenges within our schools, says Canada's human rights watchdog in a new study released today. In a report, entitled Left Out: The treatment of persons with disabilities in Canada's education system, the Canadian Human Rights Commission finds that persons with disabilities in Canada are not receiving the quality education they need to later thrive and succeed in the workforce. Discrimination and the exclusion of persons with disabilities in employment has long been recognized as some of the most prevalent human rights issues in Canada. But what makes an already bad situation worse is that for persons with disabilities the odds are often already against them because of the barriers they face in school. The Commission's report highlights barriers and key issues facing students with disabilities, including a lack of disability accommodation and support, a lack of services and funding, as well as widespread bullying and exclusion. For people with disabilities living in remote areas or on First Nations reserves, the situation is even worse. They face the same barriers but with additional ones including a lack of special education and ineffective dispute resolution mechanisms.



The Canadian Photography Institute launches a $10,000 CAD Research Fellowship Program

March 7, 2017

Today, the Canadian Photography Institute of the National Gallery of Canada launched its first Research Fellowship Program, designed to encourage advanced research in the study of the history and criticism of photography. The program is open to photography specialists – historians, conservators, independent researchers and other professionals working in the visual arts, museology and related disciplines in the social sciences in Canada and across the world. Applications must be submitted by March 31, 2017.

The Fellowships involve full-time residencies at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa in order to study photographs in the context of other art media. Successful candidates will have access to curators, conservators, collections managers and archivist, as well as, the availability of world class conservation laboratories, storage vaults, exhibition space, and library resources. Each award is valued up to $10,000 CAD, which includes expenses and stipends.



Nominations open for Canada’s Volunteer Awards’ National Advisory Committee

February 28, 2017

The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development announced the launch of a call for nominations to leaders from the not-for-profit, voluntary and business sectors to become members of the Canada’s Volunteer Awards’ (CVA) National Advisory Committee (NAC). The National Advisory Committee role is to recommend award recipients annually in partnership with the Government of Canada. Committee members ensure that Canadians are recognized for their contributions towards making a difference in their communities. Sumbit your nomination today to become a member of the Canada’s Volunteer Awards’ National Advisory Committee. Nominations will be accepted until Friday, March 17, 2017 (23:59 PT). The members of the National Advisory Committee will be announced in spring 2017.



BC minimum wage set to increase in September 2017

February 28, 2017

The BC government will increase the minimum wage by 50 cents to $11.35 an hour, effective September 15 of this year, according to a recent announcement. The daily rates for live-in home support workers and live-in camp leaders, as well as the monthly rates for resident caretakers will also increase proportionate to the general minimum hourly wage increases on the same date. More information on these rates will be made public in advance of Sept. 15.



Strong emotional intelligence is vital for the workplace, survey shows

February 23, 2017

Does EQ outweigh IQ when it comes to success in the workplace? Nearly all human resources (HR) managers (95%) and workers (99%) surveyed by staffing firm OfficeTeam said it's important for employees to have a high emotional quotient, or EQ, because it helps them manage their own emotions and understand and react to the emotions of others. Additional findings from the research:

  • More than one in five employees (21%) believe EQ is more valuable in the workplace than IQ. Nearly two-thirds (65%) said the two are equally important.
  • Most workers (92%) think they have strong emotional intelligence; slightly fewer (74%) believe their bosses do.
  • Three in 10 HR managers (30%) feel most employers put too little emphasis on emotional intelligence during the hiring process.
  • HR managers identified increased motivation and morale (43%) as the greatest benefit of having emotionally intelligent staff.
  • Reference checks (70%) were cited by HR managers as the most common way companies gauge job applicants' EQ, followed by behavioural-based interview questions (55%).
  • Forty percent of HR managers said soft skills, such as communication, problem-solving and adaptability, are more difficult to teach workers than technical abilities.
  • More than six in 10 employees (61%) admitted they've let emotions get the better of them in the office.
  • Eighty-six percent of workers said when a colleague doesn't control his or her emotions, it affects their perception of that person's level of professionalism.



Productivity decreases when senior managers leave, survey shows

February 21, 2017

Employee productivity can take a big hit when the boss leaves, a new survey shows. According to research from staffing firm Robert Half, both workers and CFOs believe having a vacant senior manager role has an adverse impact on the team's efficiency, though those in leadership (78%) are likelier to find it an even greater problem than staffers (69%). Decreased morale and motivation were the biggest reported causes of lost productivity among both groups, followed by concerns over increased workloads and fear about job security or relationships with the new boss.



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