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A third of Canadian employees check in with the office while on vacation

May 24, 2017

Are vacations where people completely disconnect from the office a thing of the past? Research shows "workations" may continue to be common for some professionals today. In a recent survey from staffing firm Accountemps, 33% of Canadian workers said they typically check in with the office at least once or twice a week during their vacation, not changing significantly from 36% one year ago. On the bright side, those who do connect with the office do so fewer times during their break: six percent of workers touch base at least once or twice a day, compared to 10% in 2016. Their reasons for checking in include gaining peace of mind that things were under control (55%), keeping projects moving along (51%), avoiding coming back to extra work (47%) and preventing colleagues from feeling undue stress (25%).



Canadians increasingly eating lunch by themselves, at their desks

May 24, 2017

A new Dalhousie study found that eating lunch at one’s desk seems to be widespread across Canada. Almost 50% of consumers in the Atlantic region eat lunch at their desk, a figure higher than any other region in Canada. Most Canadians also eat lunch alone. The percentages of consumers in Ontario, the Prairies, and the Atlantic region who eat lunch alone are higher than the Canadian average while, in Quebec, only 36% eat lunch alone. Researchers discovered that many consumers are inclined to eat out more often, and will continue to do so. Among single people, 42% anticipate eating lunch on-the-go or at a restaurant more often in the next year



Survey finds employees want flexible schedules this summer

May 23, 2017

What are the hottest summer perks? Workers surveyed by OfficeTeam said they're most interested in flexible schedules (46%), but only 27% of Canadian human resources (HR) managers reported their organization offers them at this time of year. Additionally, 25% of employees surveyed would like the option to leave early on Fridays, 10% would appreciate a more relaxed dress code, and 8% would enjoy company events such as potlucks or picnics. Unexpected absences (28%) and being overly distracted or checked out at work (20%) were identified by employers as the most common negative employee behaviours this time of year, ahead of dressing too casually (18%), not planning well for vacations (17%) and sneaking in late or leaving early (14%).



Ontario releases the Changing Workplaces Review final report and summary

May 23, 2017

The Special Advisors to the Changing Workplaces Review (Ontario) have released a 419-page Final Report. A Summary Report has also been issued. The Report, which proposes amendments to Ontario’s Employment Standards Act, 2000 and Labour Relations Act, 1995, contains 173 recommendations. In 2015 Minister of Labour Kevin Flynn initiated the Changing Workplaces Review by appointing C. Michael Mitchell and John C. Murray as Special Advisors to lead the largest review of Ontario's labour laws conducted within decades and report back to the Minister. The review was to consider issues brought about in part by the growth of precarious employment. The Review’s first phase of public consultation involved 12 sessions held across Ontario that heard over 200 presentations and received over 300 written submissions. A summary of the final report can also be found here.



University of Fredericton launches online course to enhance resiliency, help students cope with stress

May 17, 2017

According to the Mental Health Commission of Canada, more than a quarter of Canadians perceive work-related stress to be high. When demands on individuals exceed their personal resources, they become more susceptible to the negative impacts of stress, and it can severely inhibit performance. To address the growing need for skills and strategies that help individuals to better manage stress, the University of Fredericton is pleased to be launching a new, fully online course called Enhancing Workplace Resiliency. Designed by Dr. Joti Samra and Dr. Rakesh Jetly, the Enhancing Workplace Resiliency course will help students to learn effective coping mechanisms and strategies that lead to more productive, healthier, and well-balanced lives, both inside and outside of the workplace.



National Aboriginal Day becomes a statutory holiday in Yukon

May 11, 2017

The Government of Yukon’s Bill 2 to amend the Employment Standards Act was passed after third reading of the National Aboriginal Day Act and assented to by the Commissioner of Yukon Doug Phillips. The legislation creates National Aboriginal Day as an annual statutory holiday in Yukon beginning on June 21, 2017. “The Government of Yukon firmly believes that recognizing National Aboriginal Day as a statutory holiday is a progressive step in our territory. By creating a statutory holiday on June 21, we are enabling all Yukoners to celebrate Indigenous peoples’ history, culture, traditions and continuing contributions across Canada and here at home. This is key to a modern Yukon that can build on its strengths of diversity and inclusivity," says John Streicker, Minister of Community Services.



CharityVillage and TalentEgg acquire BMeaningful

May 9, 2017

CharityVillage, the largest and most popular job board in Canada’s nonprofit sector, and TalentEgg, Canada’s leading job board and online resource for students and new grads, announce Bmeaningful, Canada’s leading social impact career site has joined their family of online companies. Together, the family of companies will provide greater support, value and reach to its users and clients and are committed to helping people with their careers find purposeful work.

“Bmeaningful’s focus on social impact- including corporate social responsibility (CSR), social good and nonprofit – and their belief that there’s more to a job than making money are values that are aligned with CharityVillage and TalentEgg” says Wayne Albo, Chairman of CharityVillage and TalentEgg.

Doing well by doing good is fast becoming a business and financial imperative. In addition to the more than 170,000 charitable and non-profit Canadian organizations, there is also a movement within the for-profit sector to find ‘a better way to do business,’ with more corporations putting a higher priority on CSR. Additionally, many startups are structuring themselves as social purpose businesses- working towards social and financial goals. “The addition of Bmeaningful helps broaden our reach to the socially conscious professional and provides a platform to showcase for-profit companies commitment to social issues” says Geoff Earle, Chief Operating Officer at CharityVillage.



Salary and benefits, good work-life balance are what employees want, according to research

April 27, 2017

Randstad Canada revealed today the results of its Employer Brand Research 2017 (previously known as the Randstad Award). According to the research, employees' expectations are not always met. Employees identified money, work-life balance, job security and pleasant work atmosphere as what attracts them most to an employer. When choosing an employer, competitive salary & employee benefits (64%) tops the list as the most important factor for Canadian workers. Canadians also value good work-life balance (50%), long-term job security (49%), a pleasant working atmosphere (44%) and career progression opportunities (33%).



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.



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