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 TD Bank Group was selected as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2017), Top Employers for Canadians Over 40 (2017) and Greater Toronto's Top Employers (2017):
- TD is one of the country's leading corporate donors, with over $62 million provided in donations last year -- the bank also manages a unique online site to help employees match their skills and interests with local charitable initiatives -- over 26,000 employees are currently registered and donated over 118,000 volunteer hours in the past year
- TD introduced a groundbreaking "FlexWorkPlace" pilot program in 2010 to accommodate changing and flexible work patterns, complete with redesigned floors that include more meeting rooms, eliminate traditional offices, and a "collaborative cafe" where employees can meet and work in a comfortable and informal setting
- TD also pioneered an impressive green building program with over 170 LEED certified projects including over 120 building locations with solar power generation (over 2 megawatts of generation capacity thus far) -- the bank is also one of the first major Canadian corporations to create a Chief Environment Officer position to help oversee its many environmental initiatives
For employees, TD is not your average bank
Nicholas Hawkes was still searching for direction when he joined TD Bank Group two years ago. Thankfully, an innovative internship program for recent university graduates helped him find happiness as a Solution Architect, ITS Projects.
The 27-year-old Richmond Hill, Ont. native says the "amazing opportunity" he enjoyed through TD's two-year Technology Solutions Rotational Program also helped him gain new skills and forge valuable connections. Under the program, recent grads with IT skills are rotated through four, six-month work placements. After his stint as a solution architect, which involves developing technology to meet specific business challenges, Hawkes took advantage of the option to stay in one position after completing three-quarters of the program.
"When you leave university, you're 19 or 20 and you have no idea what you want to do," he says. "With this, you get four chances to try different positions, and hopefully you'll land in something you like."
Bharat Masrani, Group President and Chief Executive Officer for TD Bank Group, says the company is committed to helping employees achieve their full potential by setting clear expectations, investing in their development, and providing the opportunities and resources they need to be their best.
"TD is a performance-driven company, and we strongly believe that great customer experiences start with great employee experiences," he adds. "Our vision to be the better bank is only possible by creating a diverse, inclusive and supportive environment where our colleagues feel empowered and valued."
Hawkes, a graduate of the business informatics program at McMaster University, can vouch for TD's open and supportive culture. When he contacted an assistant vice-president about being his mentor during the rotational program, the senior executive immediately agreed and suggested meeting for a coffee. And when he reached out to one of TD's vice-presidents months later with a plan to improve the bank's internal search engine, his suggestions were greeted with enthusiasm.
"The culture is extremely inclusive, and they really give you the opportunities to connect with the right people," he notes. "I find that everywhere at TD. You can message anyone and they'll be more than happy to talk to you, and they're always willing to listen to your good ideas."
TD Bank Group also provides ample opportunity for skill development and long-term career advancement. Hawkes says his training began from day 1 with a comprehensive orientation. From talking to friends at other companies, he adds, those opportunities are becoming increasingly rare.
Defying the traditional, conservative image of a big bank, TD has also shifted its culture to meet the changing needs of employees. In 2010, it introduced its ground-breaking "FlexWorkPlace" pilot program to accommodate more flexible work patterns, complete with redesigned floors that include more meeting rooms, no traditional offices, and a "collaborative cafe" where employees can meet and work in a comfortable and informal setting.
As an industry leader, TD also believes strongly in the importance of giving back to the broader community. Last year alone, it contributed over $62 million to a wide variety of charities, making it one of Canada's largest corporate donors. It also manages a unique online site that helps employees match their skills and interests with local volunteer opportunities. More than 26,000 employees are registered, and they have donated over 118,000 volunteer hours in the past year.
"Providing our colleagues with the opportunity and environment to grow, develop and make meaningful contributions to our business and to our communities is ingrained in the TD culture," says Masrani. "At TD, we believe we're part of a larger community and our success depends on the success of those around us. Our purpose - what we set out to do every day - is to enrich the lives of others."
Recognized as one of Canada's Top Employers for Young People (2017)
By Kristina Leung and Richard Yerema, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Jan 9, 2017)
Here are some of the reasons why TD Bank Group was selected as one of Canada's Top Employers for Young People (2017):
- Through TD's Scholarship Summer Employment program, the bank offers scholarship recipients summer employment as a Customer Service Representative, a placement at a corporate or regional office, or employment at Canadian charitable organization, depending on the student's year of eligibility
- TD's Women in Leadership network created a mentorship program for first and second year university students interested in learning about careers in Capital Markets -- 12 female students were recently matched with Managing Directors from TD Securities for 4 months to provide insights and raise awareness of the Capital Markets field
- TD manages a generous Scholarship for Community Leadership program for students in their final year of high school or CEGEP -- recipients are awarded scholarships of up to $70,000, including up to $10,000 per year for tuition, $7,500 per year for living expenses, paid summer employment, mentorship opportunities, annual gatherings and networking opportunities (up to 20 scholarships are awarded each year)
Building the values of 'generation next' at TD Bank
TD Bank Group has planted more than 235,000 trees across Canada through its TD Tree Days program. And Morley Driedger, a Senior Analyst, Enterprise Real Estate, at TD's Toronto head office, can personally lay claim to planting at least 20.
The 27-year-old University of Waterloo economics graduate placed those sturdy saplings in the soil last fall at a park in his hometown of Aurora, Ont. The event brought together about 200 people from across the community. And it reminded Driedger all over again that TD is a pretty good place to grow a career, too.
"For me, it comes down to their culture and values," he says. "I love the emphasis they put on people development, diversity, and the environment. I feel I live and breathe those values, and they matched up exactly with what I wanted to do."
That desire to make a difference is a perfect match for TD Bank Group's values-based culture, says Sue Cummings, Executive Vice President, Global HR.
"First and foremost, we look for people who care about enriching the lives of others, whether it's our customers, communities or fellow colleagues," she explains. "Appealing to the talent of today and tomorrow challenges us to elevate our employee experience and find compelling ways to provide an environment where colleagues do work that matters, experience opportunities beyond their expectations, and can be led by great leaders who inspire them."
TD offers a plethora of programs to help fulfill those goals. To give recent graduates career-level experience in a variety of fields, it has established more than 20 associate programs. In 2016, it hired 715 full-time associates across TD and 650 interns and co-ops. From 2015 to 2016, it increased opportunities for new graduates by 21 per cent. In addition, TD's Scholarship Summer Employment program allows scholarship recipients to gain summer job experience as Customer Service Representatives or in placements at its corporate and regional offices or with Canadian charitable organizations.
Its Women in Leadership network provides mentorship opportunities for first- and second-year university students interested in learning about careers in capital markets. TD's generous Scholarship for Community Leadership program also grants 20 scholarships a year valued at up to $70,000 each to students in their final year of high school or CEGEP.
Driedger, who was hired last April, says some of his friends were surprised when he told them he was joining TD. "There's a misconception that you're going to be tied to a desk in a cubicle," he says.
But TD Bank Group's award-winning Flex Workplace concept is dramatically changing the experience of working for a financial institution. "I have a laptop and an iPhone and I can sit across multiple buildings," says Driedger, who also has a master's degree in industrial relations and human resources. "We're really trying to change the way people think about the banking industry in general and what it looks like because we're trying to attract the best and brightest talent."
In his current role with TD's Enterprise Real Estate department, Driedger is helping to push that transformation forward. Within months of taking the job, he travelled with colleagues to New York City, where they toured workplaces created by companies like Google and LinkedIn.
Innovation at TD is also being led by many like-minded young people, says Driedger. After hours, they often meet at networking events organized by TD's GenNext group. Activities have included going to Blue Jays baseball games and a large gathering at downtown Toronto's Steam Whistle Brewery early last year to kick off TD's United Way campaign.
To help all employees thrive, he adds, they're supported by flexible hours, a strong benefits package, and one of the industry's last remaining defined benefit pension plans.
"It's a really interesting time to be in banking because there's so much change that's happening," says Driedger, "but, at the same time, there's a lot of opportunity."
Recognized as one of Canada's Best Diversity Employers (2017)
By Kristina Leung and Richard Yerema, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Mar 27, 2017)
Here are some of the reasons why TD Bank Group was selected as one of Canada's Best Diversity Employers (2017):
- TD employs a Manager of Aboriginal Talent Acquisition, responsible for establishing relationships with schools, student centres and Aboriginal community organizations -- additionally, the position works with the bank's Aboriginal Circle and Aboriginal Banking Unit to support recruitment events and employee referrals -- TD also sponsors 20 scholarships for Aboriginal students through Indspire
- As a result of employee and customer feedback, TD Bank works to further incorporate diverse groups in advertising materials and initiated diversity reporting to review its market creative on a quarterly basis to ensure marketing materials meet diversity standards from an imagery perspective
- TD maintains 11 regional LGBT employee resource groups across Canada and the enterprise-wide LGBTA Pride Network with nearly 3,000 members -- and publishes an internal Pride 365 quarterly newsletter written by and for TD employees who are part of the LGBTA community
"I'm really proud of my visibility against all odds. It's a world that is dangerous when you are visibly Trans. You have to be strong and brave to overcome every little barrier that is going to get thrown your way daily. And there will be a significant amount. For me nevertheless, visibility is liberty, and it is important that I am visible so that others don't have to be." Rachel Clark, IT Specialist and award winning Transgender Activist
Be who you are... TD lives diversity
As a gay man of Jamaican descent, Al Ramsay spent years in the closet both at home and at work. That suddenly changed 12 years ago when he joined TD.
"I was out at TD a long time before I was out at home because I felt so super-comfortable about being myself at work," says Ramsay, the bank's Toronto-based National Manager for LGBT Business Development. "I had been weighed down with despair all my life with this secret, and I got lighter automatically."
It was an exciting time for Ramsay and TD. Across all divisions, the company was in the midst of its Diversity 2.0 campaign, a major push to increase diversity and inclusion led by former president and CEO Ed Clark. Current President and CEO Bharat Masrani has taken up the torch and accelerated the effort.
In 2005, TD became the first bank to sign on as a major sponsor of Pride Toronto, organizer of North America's largest annual Pride celebration. The bold move upset some clients. But TD stood firm, and Clark made it clear that the company would never negotiate its values. "That was the time," remembers Ramsay, "when I really, truly knew that this was my home."
Paul Clark, Executive Vice-President, TD, and Chair of TD's People with Disabilities Committee, says diversity is a key driver of the bank's success. "We have always been committed to creating a place where employees and customers feel welcome and comfortable, regardless of background, religion, race, disability, age, gender, sexual orientation, or any other aspect of their identity," he notes. "Creating a diverse workforce is a priority for us because it's the most effective way to bring out the best in people."
TD has created a full team of talent acquisition specialists who are focused on attracting diverse talent - including a Manager, Aboriginal Talent Acquisition, who is responsible for establishing relationships with schools, student centres and Indigenous community organizations to build awareness of careers with the bank. In partnership with several national, Indigenous-led organizations, TD also sponsors scholarship and mentorship programs for Indigenous students.
TD business leaders regularly participate in on-campus networking sessions with students with disabilities, and the company accommodates its deaf and hard-of-hearing colleagues through a full-time American Sign Language interpreter and video relay services using webcams. Visually impaired employees are supported with technology from the bank's Assistive Technologies Lab, which provides applications, for example, that automatically read e-mails.
TD also maintains 11 regional LGBT employee resource groups across Canada and one of the largest, enterprise-wide LGBTA Pride Networks in North America, with nearly 3,000 members. It also offers an extensive black employee network, and is among the most active corporate participants each year in Black History Month.
"We have robust programs to help employees from all backgrounds succeed at work," says Clark. "TD is in the people business. We enrich the lives of our customers, colleagues and communities by helping them realize their aspirations."
Based on employee and customer feedback, TD is also working to ensure that its advertising reflects the diversity of its staff and customers.
Diversity at TD is an ongoing journey, and every year it strives to improve, says Ramsay. "It's the right thing to do, but it also makes good business sense from a customer and community viewpoint," he adds. "The beauty of diversity is the diversity of thought, and if you don't have that, you're losing out on all these great ideas from people of different backgrounds. It means everyone has the opportunity to achieve their full potential."
Recognized as one of Canada's Greenest Employers (2017)
By Richard Yerema and Kristina Leung, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Apr 20, 2017)
Here are some of the reasons why TD Bank Group was selected as one of Canada's Greenest Employers (2017):
- TD promotes green building design for new and existing facility renovations, from pioneering the net-zero-energy retail branch to solar power generation (with 2 megawatts of solar generation capacity) and improving energy efficiency in all buildings by 17 percent per square foot over the past 5 years -- the bank has combined these successes with a pioneering "FlexWorkPlace" program, reducing commuting and business travel miles through greater adoption of alternative work styles
- TD has a well-established green network with representation from its corporate offices and retail operations across Canada -- the bank has 55 green teams and locations across North America, helping to coordinate numerous environmental initiatives, from educational initiatives to volunteering activities in support of the longstanding "TD Friends of the Environment Foundation"
- TD was one of the first major employers in Canada to introduce a senior executive position dedicated to environmental sustainability back in 2008 -- the bank's Chief Environment Officer is an environmental scientist with over two decades of experience in the field -- the bank also maintains an Environmental Steering Committee comprised of senior-level executives from across the company
TD Bank Group embeds the environment into its business
At TD Bank Group, Jamie Kruspel's business card reads: "Senior Manager, Strategy & Emerging Capabilities, North American Phone Channel." It should also say, "Eco-Warrior."
Driven by his passion for sustainable living and TD's commitment to the environment, Kruspel has played a key role in projects that have helped make TD an environmental leader in his hometown of London, Ont., and across Canada. "I take a lot of pride in knowing that my employer supports so many projects that promote sustainability," says the mechanical engineer. "I think it's something unique about our culture."
In 2009, Kruspel led a major retrofit of a TD branch in southwest London that resulted in the first LEED Platinum certificate for an existing bank branch in Canada - the highest level of achievement for green building excellence. The design not only incorporated energy-saving features like LED lighting, but also revamped TD Bank Group's procurement practices for renovations to favour suppliers that observe sustainable business practices. The branch, he notes, "became a template for the rest of our branch network."
Two years later, Kruspel was a project leader for the unique TD Green Energy Park on land adjoining another branch in north London. The park educates visitors about sustainability through a self-guided tour, which explains its numerous environmentally friendly features. It also includes an amphitheatre, electric car chargers, and 244 solar panels that bring the nearby TD branch to almost net-zero energy consumption. A nearby school has even incorporated the park into its environmental curriculum.
Kruspel's impressive ecological resumé also includes stints as site leader in London for TD Bank Group's national TD Tree Days program. In London alone last September, the one-day event brought together more than 250 employees and community volunteers to plant almost 2,000 trees in two locations in the city. "It's a ton of fun," he says with a smile. "It really embodies TD's mission to enrich the lives of customers, colleagues and communities." In 2008, TD Bank Group became the first - and is still the only - major Canadian financial institution to create the position of Chief Environment Officer. "At that time," says Karen Clarke-Whistler, an environmental scientist who has served in the role since its inception, "we started to recognize more the importance of the environment as an economic lever, and that we needed to understand that better - not only from a risk perspective, but from an opportunity perspective."
TD Bank Group also maintains an Environmental Steering Committee comprised of senior-level executives from across the company. Clarke-Whistler says TD's environmental initiatives are aimed at advancing two main goals. The first is to address climate change and support the transition to a low-carbon economy. And, secondly, to build stronger communities by expanding and enhancing urban green space and the activities that occur within them. "Our whole strategy," she notes, "is to embed the environment into our core business."
To reduce its carbon footprint, for example, TD Bank Group is carbon neutral and promotes green building design in all new construction and renovations. Over the past five years, it has improved energy efficiency in all its buildings by 17 per cent per square foot. The bank's pioneering Flex Workplace program has also reduced commuting and business travel through redesigned work spaces and policies that accommodate flexible work patterns.
Clarke-Whistler says surveys consistently show that TD's commitment to the environment is a deep source of pride for employees, and they're actively involved in supporting it. The company has 55 green teams in locations across North America, which help to educate and coordinate environmental activities across the country -- from educational initiatives to volunteer work with the longstanding TD Friends of the Environment Foundation. In 2017, TD's Canada 150 celebrations are engaging employees and communities through the #TDCommonGround Project, a national initiative that will enhance over 150 local parks and green spaces.