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 REDspace Inc. was selected as one of Canada's Top Small & Medium Employers (2017):
- Digital design firm REDspace has grown at a steady pace, increasing its workforce by nearly 25% in the past year while growing its client base by approximately 35%
- REDspace encourages employees to lead active, healthy lives, offering free access to an onsite fitness facility as well as a fitness club subsidy of $300 per year
- REDspace supports ongoing employee development through tuition subsidies for job-related courses, in-house training options and apprenticeship opportunities
At REDspace, it pays to push digital boundaries
Ask some IT professionals what they do for a living and they might respond with a lot of insider jargon. Not Luke DeWitt. As a Web Team Lead with digital studio REDspace Inc., he lets the work speak for itself.
Of course, it helps when your clients include entertainment and media giants like Sony Pictures, CBC, PBS and various Viacom cable networks, to name just a few, and your job is to create innovative ways they can connect with their audiences worldwide. DeWitt's team and others at REDspace help transform branded properties into digital companions that fans can interact with across multiple devices.
"I love to show off what I'm doing," says DeWitt, "but a lot of my friends outside of work aren't very technically minded. I just load up their tablet or smartphone and they can see what I've been doing. I don't have to explain it."
Halifax-based REDspace designs and develops websites, apps, games and video platforms for corporate as well as entertainment brands. The goal for each project is the same: to provide an unforgettable interactive experience. But the technology is continually changing, presenting challenges as well as opportunities.
For DeWitt, one of the joys of working with REDspace's media clients is their willingness to deliver their content in groundbreaking ways. "Our clients are all fighting for eyeballs and they trust us to pitch them ideas that will capture people's attention," he explains. "It's exciting because we're not just re-releasing the same old thing. We get to be really creative."
President & CEO Mike Johnston is justifiably proud. "We've shown we can live outside the urban centres, but still get to work for some of the biggest entertainment brands on the planet," he says. "Our employees don't have to choose between cutting-edge assignments and a high quality of living, including affordable housing and short commuting times."
When Johnston founded REDspace in 2000, the company initially focused on corporate e-learning software. But the leadership team soon decided to expand the business model and REDspace has been pushing digital boundaries ever since.
REDspace has been rewarded with international accolades and awards, including Digital Emmy Awards, Kidscreen Awards and Digi Awards. What's more, referrals have spurred a dramatic growth in the company's client base. To keep pace, the REDspace head count has doubled in the last three years.
The hiring spree is ongoing, with people at all stages of their careers in demand. "We want to maintain an ideal balance," says Johnston. "New grads have fresh ideas and perspective and we can learn from them. Senior people bring a wealth of knowledge and experience and can help to mentor junior staff."
Beyond a resume that ticks all the right boxes, REDspace is looking for people who enjoy a collaborative workplace culture. "There's not a lot of knowledge hoarding here," says Johnston. "We work and celebrate as a team."
The perks extend beyond the opportunity to work with a high-calibre roster of clients. REDspace offers fully-funded benefits, pension plan contribution matching and an interest-free employee purchase plan for personal high-tech equipment. It also has a generous allowance for professional development and career growth, including international travel to the world's foremost industry conferences.
At age 33, DeWitt jokes about being one of REDspace's "old guys" so it's a priority to stay current in a field that's always evolving. The training, he says, has given him the needed skills to reinvent his career several times in his 10 years on staff. His latest challenge includes lessons in how to be a mentor and a team leader.
"It's fun to always keep learning," DeWitt adds. "REDspace is a great place to be if you're always looking to the next big thing."