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Union Gas Limited
Union Gas employees

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

Here are some of the reasons why Union Gas Limited was selected as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2017):

  • Union Gas employees and retirees volunteer and support community improvement projects across Ontario through the "Helping Hands in Action" program -- the parent company also supports employee efforts with financial grants (up to $1,000) to purchase needed supplies and materials
  • Union Gas offers excellent financial benefits, including signing bonuses for some employees, year-end bonuses and a share purchase plan available to all employees -- also helps older employees prepare for life after work with retirement planning assistance, contributions to matching RSP, defined benefit and defined contribution plans (depending on position) and health plan coverage that extends to retirees (with no age limit)
  • Union Gas provides maternity leave top-up payments for new mothers, including adoptive moms, and supports employees with older kids through a generous academic scholarship program (to $5,000 per child)
Union Gas employees working at The Dawn Hub, one of the company's storage facilities for natural gas

Employer Background

Industry Natural Gas Distribution
Publicly traded yes
Parent company Spectra Energy Corporation
Parent company head office Chatham ON
Major Canadian hiring locations Chatham ON, Windsor ON, London ON, Waterloo ON, Hamilton ON, Kingston ON, North Bay ON, Thunder Bay ON, Dresden ON
Full-time employees in Canada 2,245
Part-time employees in Canada 91
Workforce engaged on a contract basis 1.7%
Average age of employees in Canada 46.4
Longest serving employee 49 years

Physical Workplace B+

Commuter amenities online car-pool sign-up, free parking, secure/sheltered bicycle parking
Workplace features head office is situated in a rural environment along the Thames River and within minutes of Union Gas Park and the Thames Campus Arena, the office features special parking for car pool, hybrid environmentally-friendly vehicles and expectant mothers, a newly renovated conference centre, onsite business library, first-aid room, onsite financial institution with ATM, telecommuter workstations, religious observance room, self-serve lunchroom, outdoor barbecue, outdoor patio, discounts at local restaurants
Employee lounge amenities comfortable seating, fireplace, television, magazines, books and newspapers
Onsite cafeteria healthy menus, special diet menus
Snacks available snacks available for meetings, from fresh fruit to dinners from the cafeteria, Starbucks coffee available
Onsite fitness facility for employees only, treadmills, instructor-led classes (subsidized yoga, pilates, zumba, boot camp, TRX, learn to run, tennis and self defence classes), wellness fairs (includes health check-ups and flu shot clinics hosted by registered nurses)
Other nearby amenities St. Clair College SportsPlex, YMCA, fitness club, Union Gas Park, daycare, restaurants, shopping mall, nearby riverfront walking path and picnic area with barbecues, nearby tennis courts and community gardens

Work Atmosphere & Communications A

Employee social committee name Blue Flame Club (est. 1968)
Recent social events Christmas lunch for employees with President and executive team (including prize giveaways), staff appreciation lunches and dinners, birthday breakfast with the President, holiday lunch with the President and executive team, retirement socials, annual dinners to recognize employees with 25 years of service or more
Cultural aspects employee sports teams, business casual dress, casual dress (e.g. jeans) daily, 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, defined-contribution (DC) pension, matching RSP
Long-term planning retirement planning assistance, phased-in retirement work options, life & disability insurance
Share purchase plan available to all employees
Year-end bonuses available to all employees
Referral bonuses (max) new employee referral bonuses (up to $3,000) for some positions
Signing bonuses employee discounts on a variety of products, from Microsoft software to Ford vehicles and John Deere yard equipment

Health & Family-Friendly Benefits B+

Health plan premium as part of the health plan, the employer pays up to 100% of the premiums
Flexible coverage health plan is flexible with adjustable premiums and coverage levels
Waiting period there is no waiting period for coverage
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 travel insurance, homecare, medical equipment and supplies, massage therapy, nutrition planning, podiatrist, osteopathy, chiropractor, alternative coverage (e.g. accupuncture, naturopathy)
Other health plan information individual and family health plan premiums range from 85% to 100%, employees have the option to exchange up to 5 unused vacation days for additional health flex credits
In vitro fertilization (IVF) $15,000 per lifetime
Maternity top-up (mothers) up to 100% of salary for 8 weeks
Adoption top-up up to 100% of salary for 8 weeks
Additional family-friendly benefits extended parental leave to unpaid leave, academic scholarships of up to $5,000 per child
Alternative work options flexible work hours, shortened work week (fewer hours with less pay), compressed work week, telecommuting, earned days off program
Additional family-friendly information formal Flex Friday program that allows employees to take every other Friday off

Vacation & Personal Time-Off B-

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
Previous experience considers previous work experience when setting annual vacation for new employees
Personal paid days off employees can schedule 6 personal days off each year, as needed
Company paid days off employees receive 1 personal day off, as determined by their employer
Unpaid leave maximum 6 months
Self-funded/deferred salary leave yes
Additional time-off information a small group of employees (governed by a separate collective agreement) receive 2 weeks of vacation to start, non-unionized employees can work a compressed schedule to earn every second Friday off, unionized employees can transfer banked overtime for additional time off

Employee Engagement & Performance A+

Employee performance reviews employees receive individual performance reviews every 3 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, on-the-spot rewards, long-service awards, tailored and unique rewards (i.e. travel), high performance merit award, summit awards for teams who make significant contribution
Outside survey period outside consultant surveys are held every 24 months

Training & Skills Development A+

Career planning in-house career planning services, online employee skills inventory
In-house training initiatives apprenticeship/skilled trades programs, mentoring, in-house training, online training, leadership training, paid internships, subsidies for professional accreditation
Tuition subsidies (related to job) yes
Tuition subsidies (unrelated to job) yes
Financial bonuses for course completions yes
Unique training & development programs Engineer-in-Training (EIT) program, designated Chartered Professional Accountant Training Office, Leadership Development Network Mentoring Program, no set annual maximum for tuition subsidies

Community Involvement A+

Scope of charitable involvement local
Employee charitable involvement employees are involved in selection of charities, employees receive paid time off to volunteer
Total employee volunteer hours (on company time) over 18,657 hours last year
Total number of charities supported last year approximately 334 charitable and community organizations were supported last year
Some of the community organizations supported United Way, Stratford Theatre, FIRST Robotics Canada
Charitable giving matches employee donations
Community highlight Union Gas' charitable focus includes community vitality, education and workforce development, and employee support and volunteerism. Every year, employees and retirees take the lead in supporting community improvement projects across Ontario through the Helping Hands in Action program and are also supported by Union Gas' parent company with financial grants (up to $1,000) to purchase needed supplies and materials.

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