Recognized as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2016)
By Richard Yerema and Kristina Leung, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Nov 8, 2015)
Here are some of the reasons why CIBC was selected as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2016), Ten Best Companies to Work For (2016), Top Employers for Canadians Over 40 (2016) and Greater Toronto's Top Employers (2016):
- CIBC continues to create new jobs at home, adding over 300 full-time positions last year, and encourages employees to become owners of the bank through a share purchase plan
- In addition to helping employees prepare for life after work, CIBC maintains a Retiree Advisory Committee which represents the views of the bank's retirees on issues affecting them, provides input on communications to retirees and on policy review and development -- additionally, the bank publishes "RetireeNews" and maintains a dedicate website to encourage retired employees to connect
- A leading corporate citizen, CIBC has built upon early employee initiatives and created some of the country's most recognized community fundraising initiatives, including the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run for the Cure (over $39 million since 1997) and the CIBC Miracle Day (raising nearly $74 million over 30 years) in support of children's charities
Where CIBC staff volunteer, donations follow
Although CIBC has 40,000-plus employees, its strength as a financial services leader is built on more than numbers. Most banks offer similar products and services, but what differentiates CIBC are the relationships it forges with its clients and its employees.
"It starts with team members demonstrating our values - trust, teamwork and accountability - in everything we do," says Sandy Sharman, Executive Vice-President and Chief Human Resources Officer. "We know that we all have a role to play in offering a great experience to our clients. Each of us knows it's important that we consider their needs in what we do each day."
CIBC has always provided opportunities for its employees to deepen their connections with the communities they serve through sponsorships, donations and volunteering. That was especially evident this year with the bank's role as Lead Partner of the Toronto 2015 Pan/Parapan Am Games, the largest sponsorship in CIBC history. Over 400 employees volunteered.
CIBC has also developed some of the country's most recognized community fundraising initiatives. As lead sponsor of the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run for the Cure, the largest single-day, volunteer-led event in Canada in support of the breast cancer cause, Team CIBC alone has raised over $42 million since 1997. Team CIBC has also raised more than $79 million through its signature CIBC Miracle Day, which supports children's charities across the country.
While these national campaigns are high-profile, the bank contributes to a variety of less widely known local initiatives, too - 1,780 organizations in 430 communities last year - with many brought forward by its employees. "As a good corporate citizen," says Sharman, "it's our responsibility to be very visible in the community, to give back in whatever way we can, whether it's donating dollars or time."
In 2013, Jason Bociurko, District Vice President, Northwest Ontario, drew up a proposal for CIBC to support the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre's "Exceptional Cancer Care" campaign. Coincidentally, his mother was then diagnosed with cancer and became an in-patient.
In what turned out to be his last conversation with his mother before she died, Bociurko was able to tell her that CIBC had approved a $50,000 donation to the hospital's campaign. "She was very proud and thankful," he recalls. "It had such an impact on me."
In addition to supporting community involvement, CIBC is also highly committed to helping its employees add to their skills and advance their careers. The bank invested over $64 million globally on employee training last year. That included in-house and online training programs as well as full tuition subsidies for courses taken at academic institutions.
"Mentorship is also a key component in the development of our young professionals," says Sharman. "We have mentors at the executive and management level who offer their advice on a monthly basis. There are also manager coaches to provide day to day feedback and peer mentors to give more informal support as needed."
Bociurko's career exemplifies the fast-track possibilities for CIBC employees who upgrade their skills.
He joined the bank in 1999 as an intern in an account manager role; within two years, he was a branch manager. He then moved into increasingly senior positions, being appointed district VP two years ago.
"I always worked for strong leaders who helped me put a career plan in place," says Bociurko. He is now paying forward that experience with the 175 employees for whom he's responsible. "I map out with them where they want to be in two years, in five years, and help them acquire the skill set they're going to need to get there."
This article appeared in the magazine announcing this year's Canada's Top 100 Employers winners, published November 9, 2015 in The Globe and Mail. This article was prepared with the financial support of the employer, which did not write or edit its contents.
Recognized as one of Canada's Top Employers for Young People (2016)
By Kristina Leung and Richard Yerema, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Jan 10, 2016)
Here are some of the reasons why CIBC was selected as one of Canada's Top Employers for Young People (2016):
- CIBC and the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation issued a fundraising challenge to encourage college and university students to learn about breast health and support the cause -- CIBC Education Awards of $2,500 were awarded to the top 15 student fundraisers nationally and top students in each of the five Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation regions
- CIBC manages a Risk Management Development Program for students completing their final year of student in Business Administration or a related program -- the 2-year program includes four 6-month rotations in market, credit and operational risk
- Additionally, CIBC offers a number of rotational programs in a variety of areas, including a Technology Leadership Associate Program, a Commercial Banking Associate Program, a Human Resources Development Program and a Graduates Matter Rotation Program for students in their final year of study for a Masters of Business Administration or related program
Recognized as one of Canada's Best Diversity Employers (2016)
By Kristina Leung and Richard Yerema, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Feb 23, 2016)
Here are some of the reasons why CIBC was selected as one of Canada's Best Diversity Employers (2016):
- CIBC recognizes individuals and teams that promote diversity both internally and externally through the Diversity Champion Award and the Team Impact Award -- and recently introduced the Inclusive and Consultative Leader Award, for an individual who has taken personal accountability to lead and enhance open and trusting environments, and the Community Impact Award, for individuals who positively impact diverse and inclusive communities outside of the bank
- CIBC established "WorkAbility", an employee network for persons with disabilities, and in partnership with the bank's technology advisory committee, organizes an Assistive Technology Showcase to promote awareness of accessibility issues and technologies and community partners that support persons with disabilities
- CIBC partnered with a number of national Aboriginal employment organizations to develop "Pathways to Opportunity", a program to assist Aboriginal peoples with their career search -- the program features a series of workshops to develop resume writing, interviewing and networking skills, a mock interview with feedback, and a community networking session to develop professional connections with recruiters and hiring managers at the bank -- additionally, CIBC established a peer support program for new Aboriginal employees, in partnership with the bank's Aboriginal Employee Circle
CIBC finds a soaring symbol of inclusion
Who could better reflect Canadian diversity than Suleiman Muse paddling his kayak? Muse works as an Analyst at CIBC's Corporate Services Help Desk. He immigrated to Canada from West Africa 21 years ago. A paraplegic since contracting the polio virus at age three, he developed a love of water sports and began para-kayaking in 2009.
Out of that passion emerged a rigorous training regime at Ashbridges Bay in Toronto that led to his competing for Canada in the 2011 and 2013 ParaKayaking World Championships. His colleagues at the bank raised $8,000 in 2011 to buy him a customized fibreglass kayak and paddle, and defray his travel expenses. "It really motivated me," he says.
Muse's story symbolizes CIBC's commitment to diversity and inclusion - a commitment expressed daily in its workplace but also in the bank's role as the Lead Partner for the Toronto 2015 Pan Am and Parapan Am Games and as a Premier Partner of the Canadian Paralympic Team.
"Whether it's in the workplace or on the field of play, CIBC recognizes that inclusion strengthens performance," says Laura Dottori-Attanasio, CIBC's Chief Risk Officer and Diversity & Inclusion Champion. "Our sponsorship of the 2015 Pan Am and Parapan Am Games provided a great opportunity to promote inclusiveness both internally and externally and challenge perceptions about diversity."
Muse is one of 450 members of CIBC's WorkAbility Network of employees with disabilities. He and 60 other members were Brand Ambassadors at last summer's Parapan Am Games, promoting CIBC's accessible banking initiatives and its career opportunities. (His sport wasn't part of the Games.)
"A lot of the spectators came up to me to ask about para sports," says Muse. "They told me that they had thought people with disabilities could only sit in a wheelchair, but that once they saw the para athletes compete, it was amazing."
JP Guizzetti, CIBC Director of Channel Optimization, has also seen first-hand how inclusion gives individuals and companies that extra competitive edge. Guizzetti co-chairs the bank's Pride Network, the first affinity group for LGBT employees to be formed at a major Canadian bank.
Additionally, Guizzetti was a volunteer organizer of the PrideHouseTO Pavilion at the Games. "CIBC was the first corporate sponsor of a PrideHouse at a multi-sport games," he says. "It was a way for CIBC to celebrate the Games with the LGBT community and help create a space where people could learn about how to make sport more welcoming for everyone," says Guizzetti.
"We wanted these Games to be the most inclusive multi-sport event ever," he says. "PrideHouseTO was so important to that mission because many countries competing in the Games still have laws that make it illegal to be gay. This was an opportunity to show that this is a country that's progressive and values everyone and their differences."
In addition to CIBC Pride and WorkAbility, the bank has seven other employee networks, including the International Professionals Network (IPN) for employees who are new to Canada - which is another first in the Canadian banking industry.
Gerald Wu, once new to Canada himself and now Senior Director, Executive Talent Management, co-chairs the IPN. "Many organizations have recognized that immigrants bring a global mindset and a wealth of talent to the workplace," says Wu. "CIBC is taking this one step further by ensuring that newcomers not only gain access to opportunity through being hired, but that we as new Canadians are welcomed and included."
"The simple truth is that everyone wants to belong," says Dottori-Attanasio. "When people work in an environment where they are accepted and valued, that's when people perform at their best and true innovation can flourish."
This article appeared in the magazine announcing this year's Canada's Best Diversity Employers winners, published February 24, 2016 in The Globe and Mail. This article was prepared with the financial support of the employer, which did not write or edit its contents.