Recognized as one of Canada's Top Small & Medium Employers (2017)
By Richard Yerema and Kristina Leung, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Apr 24, 2017)
Here are some of the reasons why Igloo Software was selected as one of Canada's Top Small & Medium Employers (2017):
- Kitchener-based firm Igloo Software continues to grow at a steady pace, increasing its full-time workforce by over 25% in the past year
- Igloo Software offers employees 3 weeks of starting vacation allowance, moving to 4 weeks after only 3 years on the job
- Igloo Software encourages employees to become owners, providing stock options to all employees following the completion of their probationary period -- and rewards employees who help recruit candidates from their personal networks with generous referral bonuses (to $5,000 per successful hire)
Igloo enhances its workplace with its own product
After increasing its full-time workforce by more than one-third in 2016, Igloo Software, a leading global provider of digital workplace solutions, expects 2017 to be another high-growth year.
The Kitchener, Ont. "scale-up" (at just over 10 years old, Igloo is more mature than a startup) helps companies around the world improve communication, collaboration, knowledge sharing and social engagement through its digital workplace platform. The platform builds on and goes well beyond what used to be referred to as intranets. The ultimate goal is to create a more productive and engaged workforce.
Janine Narvali, a Team Lead for Business Development, joined Igloo in 2015, and she quickly learned the Igloo platform by using it. "I was able to collaborate with colleagues and find the information I needed to do my job successfully," she says. Her experience was in contrast to that of employees at some companies, who complain that their intranets and portals are confusing or too complex.
What Narvali loves about Igloo as a user and a business development team leader is that it brings all the backend systems together in one single destination, or "one source of truth," as she calls it. "It allows me as an employee to trust that platform," she explains. "That's extremely important for employee engagement." This is especially so as the workforce becomes increasingly mobile and comprises multiple generations.
"The future of work is all about how a digital workplace can unite an organization around a consistent vision, set of values, and behaviours," says Narvali. "The result is greater speed and consistency of execution through a seamless work experience."
This kind of efficiency also drives the bottom line. She points to a call centre client in Mexico with more than 500 employees. The company reduced call times by 355 per cent by using Igloo to create a knowledge base that allowed staff to easily access the information they needed to resolve calls faster.
As she goes about her job, Narvali especially appreciates the support she gets from Igloo's leadership. "They help the entire team be successful," she says. "They roll their sleeves up and get their hands dirty. Teamwork is very important to everyone who works at Igloo. I work very closely with every single department and almost every single person within the organization."
Kristen Ruttgaizer, Director of Human Resources, says there are no silos at Igloo. When she walks past meeting rooms, she often sees representatives from all the different departments gathered together to work on projects. "They're always connecting. They're always chattering," she says of her colleagues.
The Igloo product, she says, is designed to build company culture and to benefit all employees throughout an organization by eliminating specific departmental pain-points. "As an HR leader, the Igloo platform enables better employee self-service, so I can focus on being a strategic partner to the business," adds Ruttgaizer.
In its hiring, Igloo is looking for employees who reflect its values of Commitment, Innovation and Achievement. "We want people who are passionate and committed," says Ruttgaizer. Recent openings have included sales, customer success and software development.
Along with flexwork options, perks of a job at Igloo include a minimum of three weeks' vacation, two personal floater days, full health and dental insurance, discounted gym membership, paid parking, green transport incentives, and a very active employee-led social committee.
There are two major social events every year on top of regular "cake" days, video game nights and movie afternoons, where Igloo rents out local cinemas, and serves popcorn and drinks.
"I love the onsite massage therapist every Friday," says Narvali. "It helps me spend my benefits and saves me travel time."
Adds Ruttgaizer: "Even employees who work from home say, 'I want to be in the office.' It's such a great environment."