Recognized as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2017)
By Richard Yerema and Kristina Leung, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Nov 6, 2016)
Here are some of the reasons why Intact Financial Corporation was selected as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2017) and Greater Toronto's Top Employers (2016):
- Intact Financial offers maternity and parental leave top-up payments for its new parents (up to 18 weeks for new moms), and through a third-party daycare provider, offers the convenience of an onsite daycare centre (with over 80 spaces) when they are ready to return to work
- Intact Financial supports ongoing employee development with tuition subsidies for courses related to their current role, a variety of in-house training programs, financial bonuses for the completion of certain programs and invests the next generation of leaders through a 2-year "Graduate Leadership Development" program for its MBA graduates
- Intact Financial rewards employees through year-end bonuses and helps to cultivate an ownership culture through a share purchase plan that is available to all employees -- the company also helps employees plan for the future with defined benefit and defined contribution pension plans
When Intact's people came to the rescue
It was all hands on deck. The Fort McMurray wildfire of spring 2016 was the worst natural disaster in Canadian history, and the country's largest property and casualty insurer, Intact Financial Corporation, headquartered in Toronto, rose to the challenge. Employees from across Canada pitched in to help Fort McMurray residents when they were forced from their homes.
"We were on the ground within hours of the news," says Denise Thompson, Vice President, Human Capital Management. "We mobilized our teams to set up evacuation centres throughout Alberta, to answer questions, handle claims and provide financial relief to our customers. It was inspiring to see the commitment and the caring that our team showed."
Thompson says the crisis response reflects the strong sense of engagement among Intact employees. The insurer ranks among the top quartile of Canadian companies in surveys of employee engagement. "Our employees have a passion to make a difference for customers and their communities," she says.
Last year, Intact had more than 3,000 positions available. While it hires a large number of claims representatives and underwriters, the company looks outside these traditional insurance roles, too, recruiting software engineers and data scientists to create innovative technological solutions for customers.
Intact employee benefits set it apart. These include maternity and parental leave top-up payments for new parents (up to 18 weeks for birth mothers and up to six weeks for other parents). In the Toronto office, there is access to an onsite daycare centre with over 80 spaces. Another key benefit is the employee share purchase plan; employees can invest up to 10 per cent of their salary annually and the company matches 50 per cent of net shares at the end of each calendar year.
Intact promotes the continuing education of employees through tuition subsidies for courses related to their existing jobs, a variety of in-house training programs, and bonuses of up to $2,000 for completion of certain programs, such as the Chartered Insurance Professional (CIP) designation.
Adam Lawrence came to Intact with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree three years ago, starting in the claims department as a customer service representative. He then joined the two-year commercial lines trainee program. He earned his CIP, and progressed to Intermediate Commercial Lines Underwriter, evaluating risks for mid-market businesses.
"What I'd like to do next is apply the skills I've learned in claims and underwriting to the corporate side," he says. "I'm interested in going into our sales and business development area or our marketing team, now that I have a better understanding of what our product is."
Lawrence praises Intact for its approach to career development. "Your direct manager checks in with you often and plans out where you want to go and where your skill sets would be needed. Both my direct manager and my director sit with me quarterly and make sure I'm progressing on the path." He recently got to job-shadow a sales and business development team to see what they do on a day to day basis.
Lawrence also gains from participating in the LGBT and Allies Network, one of seven employee networks. "It's given me an opportunity to develop my leadership skills outside of my day job," he says. As chair of the national network, he manages peers, organizes events and proposes budgets and annual goals to senior vice presidents. "My job is more than just underwriting; I contribute to the organization's success in many ways. It has enabled me to build a brand for myself."