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 Benevity, Inc. was selected as one of Canada's Top Small & Medium Employers (2017):
- Benevity supports new moms to-be with a generous subsidy for IVF (to $15,000) and follows up with maternity and parental leave top-up payments for new moms and dads, including adoptive parents (to 70% of salary for up to 26 weeks)
- Benevity is a growing employer, creating full-time jobs and reaching out to the next generation through summer, co-op and paid internship opportunities
- Benevity ensures it listens to its workforce through in-house and outside consultant surveys and also captures valuable feedback from departing employees through exit interviews
Benevity does well by doing good
Benevity Inc. has made "doing well by doing good" its mantra, using technology that enables corporations and their people to make a positive difference in the world. At the same time, the fast-growing tech company based in Calgary is also helping clients with their talent acquisition and management.
"We enable employers to help people be their true and best self in the workplace," says founder and CEO Bryan de Lottinville. Benevity's cloud-based Spark platform makes workplace giving, corporate matching, grant-making and volunteering easy and flexible, while empowering employees to choose the causes that resonate with them personally.
The traditional approach to corporate giving has been mostly top-down, notes de Lottinville, with employers exhorting workers to participate in an annual fundraising campaign with a Yes/No decision about whether to allocate part of their paycheque to someone else's idea of a worthy cause.
"In the past, it was more of a box-ticking exercise," says the CEO, recalling workplace charity drives that did little to inspire or involve employees. "Today's workers -- especially Millennials -- have grown up web-savvy and empowered. They want to be able to do some good in the world in a more democratized and interactive way."
Several hundred global Fortune 1000 companies, including Microsoft, Google, Nike and Coca-Cola, use Benevity's market-leading solution to power corporate giving programs. According to de Lottinville, honouring employees' wishes to give to causes that matter to them is a powerful tool that helps attract, engage and retain a diverse workforce. As socially conscious Millennials reach 50 per cent of the workforce by 2020, the alignment of corporate and personal values will become even more crucial.
With software available in 15 languages, Benevity has almost 3 million users and has processed over $1 billion in donations and millions of hours of volunteer time to more than 100,000 global charities.
Corporate giving is a growing field that has seen Benevity's employee numbers double in each of the last five years. Today, with offices in Victoria and Toronto, in addition to its Calgary headquarters, Benevity employs primarily tech and client services professionals. They share a passion for the company's culture, values and social mission, and they walk the talk. Through their own internal program, 81 per cent of them give time, money or expertise back to their favourite causes.
As one of Canada's first certified B Corporations, Benevity is part of a growing international community of for-profit enterprises that are committed to using the power of business to solve social and environmental challenges. In recruitment, the company looks for people with the "Benevity Unicorn Factor," the blend of unique attributes that will make someone successful at the company. With its people considered its most sustainable differentiator, the company takes orientation and on-boarding seriously, with de Lottinville himself hosting a two-hour session every few weeks with new hires.
Amy Steen was recently promoted to a team leadership role after starting work in Benevity's Victoria office last year as a software developer. She's impressed with the company's commitment to gender equality, from the senior levels to the tech roles, long a male-dominated field. The company provides mentoring, training and the time and tools she needs for professional development, Steen says. "Benevity is really stepping up to the plate."
She also appreciates that the company works hard to make everyone feel like they're integral to the team. Events like Benevity Hugs and Fist Bumps, company-wide meetings where people share their successes, help her stay informed and connected.
For Steen, an avid equestrian who directs her giving to horse rescue organizations, it's ultimately the culture that makes Benevity such a special place to work. "It rubs off when you're surrounded by passionate people who want to make the world a better place," she says. "On a deep personal level, I feel I have become a better person."