Ontario Public Service / OPS
OPS employees holding a virtual meeting

Recognized as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2017)

Here are some of the reasons why Ontario Public Service / OPS was selected as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2017), Top Employers for Canadians Over 40 (2016) and Greater Toronto's Top Employers (2017):

  • OPS offers generous maternity and parental leave top-up payments for new mothers and fathers (including adoptive parents) -- employees also have priority placement for their children at the Queen's Park Child Care Centre, along with a variety of alternative work options to help balance their professional and personal lives (dependent on their position)
  • Along with an incredible array of career possibilities at one of the province's largest employers, OPS manages a sponsored employee program, a unique volunteer opportunity for high potential employees to be seconded for up to 15 weeks to work for United Way (with regular pay)
  • OPS employees can apply for an unpaid leave of absence or a self-funded leave of absence for up to one year in duration
OPS employees   (Photo credit: Vlade Shestakov)

Employer Background

Industry Provincial Government
Major Canadian hiring locations Toronto ON, Peterborough ON, Thunder Bay ON, Kingston ON, Guelph ON, Ottawa ON, London ON, Sudbury ON, St Catharines ON, Orillia ON
Full-time employees in Canada 62,080
Part-time employees in Canada 1,710
Workforce engaged on a contract basis 13%
Average age of employees in Canada 45.1
Longest serving employee 53 years

Physical Workplace B+

Commuter amenities car-pool sign-up program, secure/sheltered bicycle parking
Workplace features across the OPS, employees work in a variety of settings, from small field offices in remote areas of Ontario to Queen's Park in the heart of downtown Toronto, the main Queen's Park location is comprised of a series of buildings around the Ontario Legislature, occupying close to 2 city blocks and providing almost 900,000 square feet of space, in 2005, the organization initiated a massive green-energy conversion project, which included a deep lake water cooling system that uses the waters of Lake Ontario to reduce cooling and heating costs, as well as improve the air quality of all buildings, the Queen's Park location features indoor and outdoor secure bicycle storage with shower facilities, a first-aid and wellness resource centre, telecommuter workstations, religious observance room, self-serve lunchroom, outdoor patio
Employee lounge amenities comfortable seating, music, television, event space in the St. Lawrence Lounge (often used for charity campaign launches, guest speakers, vendor markets and celebrations)
Onsite cafeteria healthy menus, special diet menus
Onsite fitness facility for employees only, free membership, instructor-led classes (yoga, step, boot camp, line dancing and Zumba), weights, OPS personnel operate fitness area and volunteer as class instructors (with $20 monthly fees donated to charity)
Other nearby amenities YMCA, fitness club, Queen's Park, daycare, restaurants, shopping mall, University of Toronto, Art Gallery of Ontario, Gardiner Museum, Royal Ontario Museum, access to weekly farmer's markets at the Toronto Sick Kids Hospital, Toronto Eaton Centre Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts

Work Atmosphere & Communications B+

Recent social events a variety of employee recognition celebrations, including celebrations to recognize outstanding achievements, diversity celebrations, lunch and learn sessions, environmental awareness events, and many more
Cultural aspects employee sports teams, business casual dress, casual dress Fridays, music while working
Employee communications intranet site, company newsletter, traditional/email suggestion box

Financial Benefits & Compensation A

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-benefit (DB) pension
Long-term planning retirement planning assistance, phased-in retirement work options, life & disability insurance

Health & Family-Friendly Benefits A+

Health plan note Ontario Public Service has multiple employee groups, health plans may vary by position
Health plan premium as part of the health plan, the employer pays up to 100% of the premiums
Minimum hours worked for coverage 14 hours per week
Waiting period for coverage 60 days
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 equipment and supplies, massage therapy, podiatrist, osteopathy, chiropractor, alternative coverage (e.g. accupuncture, naturopathy)
Other health plan information mental health awareness campaign, health spending account of up to $750 for non-bargaining unit employees
Family-friendly benefits note Ontario Public Service has multiple employee groups, family-friendly policies may vary by position
Maternity top-up (mothers) up to 93% of salary for 17 weeks
Parental top-up (mothers) up to 93% of salary for 15 weeks
Parental top-up (fathers) up to 93% of salary for 17 weeks
Adoption top-up up to 93% of salary for 17 weeks
Additional family-friendly benefits extended parental leave to unpaid leave, daycare centre onsite
Alternative work options flexible work hours, shortened work week (fewer hours with less pay), compressed work week, telecommuting

Vacation & Personal Time-Off B+

Vacation note Ontario Public Service has multiple employee groups, vacation policies may vary by position
Vacation allowance new employees receive 3 weeks of paid vacation after their first year on the job
Vacation jump vacation increases after 10 years of employment
Maximum vacation allowance employees move to a maximum of 6 weeks of vacation over their career
Unpaid leave maximum 12 months
Self-funded/deferred salary leave maximum 12 months

Employee Engagement & Performance B+

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, Amethyst Awards to recognize outstanding employee achievement, local and ministry-specific recognition and celebrations in various professional categories across the services as well as informal peer-to-peer recognition programs
Outside survey period outside consultant surveys are held every 36 months

Training & Skills Development B+

Career planning in-house career planning services, online employee skills inventory
In-house training initiatives mentoring, in-house training, online training, leadership training, paid internships, subsidies for professional accreditation
Tuition subsidies (related to job) yes
Unique training & development programs accelerated leadership development, executive leadership development programs, diversity training and mentorship, internships for internationally trained individuals and engineers, internships for students and new grads in a variety of disciplines

Community Involvement B+

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 18 charitable and community organizations were supported last year
Some of the community organizations supported Federated Health Charities Campaign (includes directing support for 16 health-related charitable organizations) as well as United Way campaigns across the province
Community highlight OPS' philanthropic efforts are primarily focused on supporting health and community building initiatives. As part of the organization's support for the annual United Way campaign, OPS employees can direct their support to a particular region in the province. The OPS also manages a sponsored employee program, a unique volunteer opportunity for high potential employees to be seconded to the United Way for up to 15 weeks (with regular pay).

Recognized as one of Canada's Greenest Employers (2016)

Here are some of the reasons why Ontario Public Service / OPS was selected as one of Canada's Greenest Employers (2016):

  • To support the organization's action plan, OPS established an in-house "Green Office" in 2008 to oversee efforts to reduce its environmental footprint -- the office is led by an Assistant Deputy Minister within the Ministry of Government Services and is responsible for implementing a multi-year "Green Transformation Strategy" to guide and demonstrate the provincial government's commitment to sustainable operations
  • OPS maintains a unique reuse and redeployment program for everything from furniture to computers to paper to heavy machinery and laboratory equipment, ensuring that reusable items are saved, cataloged and shipped to other locations as needed -- in addition, the organization recently launched "OPS Green Exchange", an online program to help nearby offices exchange supplies
  • As a result of OPS' ongoing "Green Print Strategy", the organization has removed over half of its printers from operation and reduced paper consumption by approximately 35 millions sheets of paper each year, or enough to save 2,100 trees -- the Service continues to work towards a goal of a 50 percent reduction in paper usage
  • As part of its overall "Green Transformation Strategy", the OPS has set greenhouse gas emission reduction targets to 19 percent below its 2006 baseline level -- to help reach this target the OPS has adopted the LEED Silver Certification standard as a minimum for all new government-owned office buildings and major renovations, and has updated its auto fleet procurement policies as well as installing over 60 electric vehicle charging stations -- the Service has over 1,440 hybrids and 87 electric vehicles on the road (compared to just over 100 hybrids in 2006)
OPS employees from the Ministry of Energy taking part in a Clean Air Commute

Highlights

Major Canadian hiring locations Toronto ON, Peterborough ON, Thunder Bay ON, Kingston ON, Guelph ON, Ottawa ON, London ON, Sudbury ON, St Catharines ON, Orillia ON
Full-time employees in Canada 61,698
Employee green team OPS Green Teams (there are over 100 green teams supported by the Green Office across all ministries)
Senior executive who oversees initiatives Assistant Deputy Minister, Centre for Leadership and Learning (oversees the Green Office)
Formal strategy/policy name Green Transformation Strategy; OPS Green Office; Ontario Climate Change Action Plan (est. 2007) to set province wide emission reductions
Green highlights Clean Air Commute, Green Government Task Force, Think Green Intranet and the Think Green Speaker Series, Green Move Guide (to highlight green consideration when relocating) Annual Think Green Art Show (July and August), Green Workplace Guide, OPS Green Fleet Strategy, Meet Smart + Travel Smart (to increase the use of video conference technology and reduce unnecessary travel), online travel and print calculators (to create employee awareness about the impacts of unnecessary printing and travel)
In-house waste reduction and recycling battery collection program (over 3,700kg of batteries collected last year), e-waste, organics (at some locations)
Commuter amenities car-pool sign-up program, secure/sheltered bicycle parking
In-house environmental audit yes
External environmental audit yes
Publishes sustainability report yes
Some of the green community initiatives Earth Day, World Wildlife Fund (Earth Hour and National Sweater Day), Smart Commute, World Water Day, Clean Air Commute Campaign (OPS initiative in partnership with Pollution Probe)
Head office LEED Platinum
Other location LEED Gold
Building footprint includes other building accreditation (BOMA etc.)

Recognized as one of Canada's Top Employers for Young People (2017)

Here are some of the reasons why Ontario Public Service / OPS was selected as one of Canada's Top Employers for Young People (2017):

  • OPS provides law students interested in Aboriginal legal issues with opportunities to gain related work experience and foster positive relationships with Aboriginal communities through a dedicated summer law program -- students in their first or second year of study work on a variety of related issues including Aboriginal policy development and implementation, Aboriginal title claims, Treaty claims, rights claims and consultation issues
  • OPS established the OPS Learn and Work initiative, a co-operative education program that provides employment opportunities for high school students from selected priority communities -- the 22-week program consists of two paid co-op terms at the OPS and other related agencies with students working in a variety of areas and positions including administrative support, education and training, justice and law enforcement, and IT (to name a few)
  • OPS maintains "Tomorrow's Ontario Public Service (TOPS)", an internal group that provides young employees with networking, mentoring and learning opportunities -- the group organizes a mentorship program, dedicated speaker series, educational TOPS Talks, TOPS Awards to recognize members in a variety of categories such as leadership, partnership and inclusion, and an annual Symposium Conference to discuss how public servants can innovate and leverage best practices in their daily work
  • In partnership with Confederation College and industry partners, the OPS offers a 2-year First Nations Natural Resources Youth Employment Program for Aboriginal youth between the ages of 16 and 18 -- participants work in a variety of fields including forestry, mining, fisheries and wildlife, and participate in workplace training as well as personal development workshops
OPS employees taking part in the organization's annual Walk & Run

Highlights

Industry Provincial Government
Major Canadian hiring locations Toronto ON, Peterborough ON, Thunder Bay ON, Kingston ON, Guelph ON, Ottawa ON, London ON, Sudbury ON, St Catharines ON, Orillia ON
Full-time employees in Canada 62,080
Student opportunities summer jobs, co-op opportunities, paid internships
Tuition subsidies (related to job) yes
Career development in-house training, online training, in-house career planning services, mentoring, leadership training, online employee skills inventory
Vacation allowance new employees receive 3 weeks of paid vacation after their first year on the job
Unique initiatives maintains the Premier's Council on Youth Opportunities, an advisory body comprised of youth (ages 16 to 25), young professionals, front-line workers and other leaders who provide advice on government initiatives impacting youth (especially at-risk youth), Northern Development and Mines Internship Program Pilot to attract and retain graduates to northern communities, summer law program and opportunities to article with the Ministry of the Attorney General, Ontario Internship Program which offers 12-month paid internships in seven focus areas (more than 1,600 interns hired since the program's inception)

Recognized as one of Canada's Best Diversity Employers (2017)

Here are some of the reasons why Ontario Public Service / OPS was selected as one of Canada's Best Diversity Employers (2017):

  • The OPS strives to create an inclusive and accessible work environment for all employees and launched the "Accessibility@Source" campaign to help staff integrate accessibility considerations into everything they do -- resources include guidelines on creating accessible documents and hosting accessible meetings, an accessible procurement program to consider the needs of persons with disabilities at all stages of the procurement process, and an Accessibility in the Built Environment guide for employees involved in policy development or projects that pertain to the physical workplace
  • In addition to annual accessibility plans, the OPS offers a range of accessibility tools and resources for employees and ministries including an Accessibility Centre of Excellence for information and IT accessibility, an Accessibility Leads Forum to provide ministries with an avenue to share best practices, and an Accessibility Innovation Showcase, organized recently in partnership with the US Consulate General in Toronto
  • The OPS maintains an Inclusion Lens to help staff explore and consider up to 17 different dimensions of diversity -- the Lens is applied to major OPS processes such as cabinet submission, program and legislation review, and also includes an executive recruitment lens for senior management positions
  • Additionally, the organization is developing a non-executive recruitment lens to help hiring managers and recruitment consultants identify potential barriers at each stage of the recruitment process, and recently surveyed 4,000 applicants to its Ontario Internship Program to better understand who is applying to work for the OPS and how they experience the recruitment process
OPS employees   (Photo credit: Vlade Shestakov)

Highlights

Industry Provincial Government
Major Canadian hiring locations Toronto ON, Peterborough ON, Thunder Bay ON, Kingston ON, Guelph ON, Ottawa ON, London ON, Sudbury ON, St Catharines ON, Orillia ON
Full-time employees in Canada 62,080
Senior executive who oversees diversity initiatives Chief Inclusion & Accessibility Officer
Formal commitment maintains dedicated diversity offices and councils, strategic plans for anti-racism, accessibility and inclusion, and a Healthy Workplace, Healthy Minds initiative to build awareness of mental health in the workplace
Employee resource groups Women in Government, Women in Corrections network (600 members), Black Ontario Public Service Employees Network, East Asian Network Group, South Asian Network, Nation to Nation (Aboriginal peoples), OPS Pride Network (1,600 members and champions), FrancoGO (francophone employees), Tomorrow's Ontario Public Service (young people, 4,700 members)
Diversity training and awareness training on topics such as bias awareness, Indigenous cultural competency, anti-racism and accessibility
Diversity highlights career development opportunities for underrepresented groups in leadership positions, Positive Space Program and champions for employees of all gender identities and sexual orientations (1,300 trained champions in 84 cities across Ontario), OPS Internship Program for Internationally Trained Individuals (6-month paid placements), recruitment programs for Aboriginal youth such as Aboriginal Youth Exchange Program and Aboriginal Law Summer Program, OPS International Internship Program for Engineers (12- to 15-month placements for internationally educated engineers), tangible inclusion commitments included in performance plans for executive and senior management
Some of the diversity-focused partnerships Ability Edge (6-month paid internships for recent grads with disabilities), Career Edge (paid internships for internationally trained individuals), Miziwe Biik Aboriginal Employment and Training, Feathers of Hope Youth Forum, Native Women's Resource Centre, Equitek

The Career Directory

Ontario Public Service / OPS has been selected for The Career Directory, our guide to entry-level recruitment for recent college and university graduates.
OPS employees taking part in a Bike 4 United Way fundraiser

Highlights for New Grads

Industry Provincial Government
Major Canadian hiring locations Toronto ON, Peterborough ON, Thunder Bay ON, Kingston ON, Guelph ON, Ottawa ON, London ON, Sudbury ON, St Catharines ON, Orillia ON
Full-time employees in Canada 62,080
Part-time employees in Canada 1,710
Student opportunities paid internships, summer jobs, co-op opportunities
Training subsidies for professional accreditation, orientation program, online training, in-house training, mentoring, in-house career planning services, leadership training
Tuition subsidies (related to job) yes
Other info for new grads The OPS manages the Ontario Internship Program, a 2-year paid position in a wide range of ministries and agencies across the organization.
Typical new grad positions Junior Policy Advisor, Policy Advisor, Research Analyst, Program Analyst, Program Coordinator, Communications Advisor, Recruitment Assistant, Learning Administrator, Issues Management Assistant, Financial Coordinator
Starting salary $40K to $45K
Work perks health benefits for new employees, flexible work hours, telecommuting
Vacation allowance new employees receive 3 weeks of paid vacation after their first year on the job

Academic fields recruited

Recruits at these schools


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