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Great-West Life Assurance Company, The
Great-West Life employees taking part in a United Way 'Day of Caring'

Recognized as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2016)

Here are some of the reasons why Great-West Life Assurance Company, The was selected as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2016) and Manitoba's Top Employers (2016):

  • Great-West Life encourages ongoing employee development through in-house training programs, tuition subsidies for courses taken at outside institutions (including general interest courses), summer and co-op opportunities and dedicated rotational programs for students completing their actuarial or accounting designation
  • Great-West Life takes a holistic approach to employee well-being through a wellness spending account that can be used for mental health, physical health and sporting activities, subsidized membership to an impressive onsite fitness facility at the head office, and a number of employee sports leagues and tournaments, including hockey, curling, soccer, volleyball and golf
Great-West Life employee receiving personal training at the company's on-site fitness centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba

Employer Background

Industry Direct Life Insurance Carriers
Publicly traded yes
Parent company Great-West Lifeco Inc.
Parent company head office Winnipeg MB
Full-time employees in Canada 10,224
Part-time employees in Canada 418
Workforce engaged on a contract basis 4.4%
Average age of employees in Canada 43
Longest serving employee 44 years

Physical Workplace

Commuter amenities subsidized parking
Workplace features located adjacent to the province's legislative grounds, the head office includes three main buildings and features a conference centre, a large pyramidal skylight, rotating artwork on display along the cafeteria walkway, professionally landscaped grounds, nap room, religious observance room, self-serve lunchroom, outdoor patio
Employee lounge amenities comfortable seating, television
Onsite cafeteria healthy menus, special diet menus, subsidized meals, in-house Tim Hortons, seating for 600 people
Onsite fitness facility (employees only) subsidized membership, treadmills, stationary bikes, stairmasters, instructor-led classes (kickboxing, yoga, belly dancing, pilates, core, weights, Fit2Box), weights, shower facilities, spa-like experience, accessible during the workday and after hours
Other nearby amenities Granite Curling Club, fitness club, Assiniboine River and Red River walkway (and skating in the winter), restaurants, shopping mall, Winnipeg Art Gallery, Centennial Concert Centre, Gas Light Theatre, Forks Market, Canadian Museum for Human Rights, MTS Centre, trendy Osborne Village neighbourhood

Work Atmosphere & Communications

Employee social committee name Great-West Life Social Club (est. decades ago)
Recent social events Festive Feast Christmas lunch, children's Christmas party, summer barbecue, home team boosters (in support of their NHL teams), employee sports leagues and tournaments, including hockey, curling, soccer, volleyball and golf
Cultural aspects business casual dress, music while working
Employee communications intranet site, traditional/email suggestion box
Other in-house communications The Answer Program (TAP) confidential online feedback program

Financial Benefits & Compensation

Outside salary surveys participates in outside salary surveys every 12 months
Employee salary reviews individual salaries are reviewed every 12 months
Long-term savings defined-contribution (DC) pension
Long-term planning retirement planning assistance, phased-in retirement work options, life & disability insurance
Share purchase plan available to all employees
Signing bonuses available for some positions
Additional financial benefits subsidized home insurance, subsidized auto insurance

Health & Family-Friendly Benefits

Health plan premium as part of the health plan, the employer pays up to 70% of the premiums
Flexible coverage health plan is flexible with adjustable premiums and coverage levels
Minimum hours worked for coverage 15 hours per week
Waiting period there is no waiting period for coverage
Family coverage option yes
Retiree coverage with no age limit yes
Dental coverage routine, restorative, orthodontics
Traditional coverage (e.g. prescription drugs) yes
Additional coverage employee assistance (EAP) plan, semi-private hospital room, physiotherapy, medical travel insurance, medical equipment and supplies, massage therapy, podiatrist, osteopathy, chiropractor, alternative coverage (e.g. accupuncture, naturopathy), wellness account for additional mental health, physical health and fitness related activities
Alternative work options flexible work hours, telecommuting
Additional family-friendly information offers maternity top-up payments (for 15 weeks) to the EI maximum annual salary or $48,600, also extends the same parental leave top-up payments (for 10 weeks) for new fathers and adoptive parents

Vacation & Personal Time-Off

Vacation allowance new employees receive 2 weeks of paid vacation after their first year on the job
Vacation jump vacation increases after 2 years of employment
Maximum vacation allowance employees move to a maximum of 5 weeks of vacation over their career
Unpaid leave of absence option yes
Additional time-off information varying by position, some employees can take advantage of personal paid days off

Employee Engagement & Performance

Employee performance reviews employees receive individual performance reviews every 6 months
Managers receive performance review training yes
360° feedback option as part of the review process, performance feedback is also solicited from co-workers and other managers familiar with each employee's work
Confidential employee feedback employees can also provide confidential feedback on their manager's performance
Exit interview exit interview option is available for departing employees
Performance recognition individual performance bonuses, long-service awards, tailored and unique rewards (i.e. travel)
In-house survey period in-house surveys are conducted every 24 months
Outside survey period outside consultant surveys are held every 24 months

Training & Skills Development

Career planning in-house career planning services
In-house training initiatives apprenticeship/skilled trades programs, in-house training, online training, leadership training, paid internships, subsidies for professional accreditation
Tuition subsidies (related to job) yes
Annual tuition maximum employer pays up to $2,000 in tuition subsidies per year
Tuition subsidies (unrelated to job) yes
Unrelated tuition maximum employer pays up to $2,000 in tuition subsidies per year
Unique training & development programs rotational programs for students completing their actuarial or accounting designation

Community Involvement

Scope of charitable involvement local, national
Employee charitable involvement employees are involved in selection of charities, employees receive paid time off to volunteer
Total number of charities supported last year approximately 900 charitable and community organizations were supported last year
Some of the community organizations supported Canadian Mental Health Association, Canadian Depression Research and Intervention Network, United Way, Hockey Helps the Homeless (national sponsor), Frontier College (literacy program), Indspire (Aboriginal youth program), and the United Way/Centraide across Canada
Community highlight Great-West Life's charitable focus includes health and wellness, education, community development, arts and culture, and social services. Back in 2007, the company created the Great-West Life Centre for Mental Health in the Workplace, a fully accessible resource to address the prevention, intervention, and management of workplace mental health issues. The Centre works with similar organizations, such as the Mental Health Commission of Canada, to expand awareness of healthy workplaces, and all of the Centre's work is freely available to all employers across Canada. Great-West Life is a designated Imagine Caring Company donating over $11 million to community and charitable initiatives last year

Recognized as one of Canada's Top Employers for Young People (2016)

Here are some of the reasons why Great-West Life Assurance Company, The was selected as one of Canada's Top Employers for Young People (2016):

  • Great-West Life manages a scholarship and work placement program in partnership with University of Winnipeg for Business Administration or Economics students -- additionally, actuarial and CA students working at Great-West Life may have opportunity to rotate departments or cities, including London, Toronto, Winnipeg
  • Great-West Life recruits second and third year accounting students from the University of Manitoba who are interested in pursuing the CPA designation and offers 4-month co-op and summer placements
Great-West Life employees volunteering with Habitat for Humanity

Highlights

Industry Direct Life Insurance Carriers
Full-time employees in Canada 10,224
Student opportunities summer jobs, co-op opportunities
Tuition subsidies (related to job) yes
Annual tuition maximum employer pays up to $2,000 in tuition subsidies per year
Career development in-house training, online training, in-house career planning services, leadership training, apprenticeship/skilled trades programs
Vacation allowance new employees receive 2 weeks of paid vacation after their first year on the job

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