Mountain Equipment Co-op
Pattern-making, cutting and sewing take place here as part of the design process for MEC-label clothing and gear   (Photo credit: Ed White Photographics)

Recognized as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers

Here are some of the reasons why Mountain Equipment Co-op was selected as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2019) and BC's Top Employers (2018) :

  • MEC supports ongoing employee development through a generous tuition subsidy program for courses related and not directly related to their current position (to $1,000), as well as providing in-house training and paid internship opportunities for the next generation of employees
  • An industry leader, MEC provides maternity leave top-up payments for full-time employees who become new mothers (to 75% of salary for 17 weeks) as well as parental top-up for new fathers (to 75% of salary for 11 weeks)
  • MEC's many community partnerships reflect the co-op's vision "to build a community of active outdoor enthusiasts" -- the co-op and its employees work with numerous groups across the country who work to get Canadians outside, from building new recreation trails to support for urban cycling programs to support for at-risk youth through outdoor recreation and education programs
MEC staffers testing out camping gear at the company's North York store in Toronto  

Employer Background

Industry Retail Stores
Established in Canada 1971
Major Canadian hiring locations Kelowna BC, Langley BC, Halifax NS, Edmonton AB, Burlington ON, Vancouver BC, Victoria BC, Calgary AB, North Vancouver BC, London ON, Winnipeg MB, Toronto ON, Montréal QC, Longueuil QC, Barrie ON, Québec QC, Kitchener ON, Laval QC, North York ON
Full-time employees in Canada 1,043
Part-time employees in Canada 350
Workforce engaged on a contract basis 6.16%
Average age of employees in Canada 32 years
Longest serving employee 38 years

Physical Workplace Rating: A+

Commuter amenities subsidized parking, electric vehicle charging stations, secure/sheltered bicycle parking
Workplace features designed and built with ongoing feedback from an employee steering committee, MEC's LEED Platinum-certified green head office was designed to encourage employee health and activity and a low environmental footprint, featuring rainwater collection systems, geothermal heating, lighting and sunlight sensors that raise and lower window blinds, and secure bike parking for over 120 bicycles (with shower facilities and lockers available), sit-stand workstations, nap room, outdoor patio, self-serve lunchroom, outdoor barbecue
Employee lounge amenities comfortable seating, music, television, table tennis, guitar, accessible rooftop deck (with great mountain views), high-end coffee brewing system and vending machines with snacks and drinks
Onsite fitness facility for employees only, free membership, treadmills, stationary bikes, instructor-led classes (Cross-Fit, spinning, boot camp (some classes led by MEC employees), yoga), rowing machines, weights, basketball court, shower facilities, climbing wall
Other nearby amenities Creekside Community Centre, Britannia Community Centre, fitness club, China Creek Park, daycare, restaurants, SkyTrain station and express bus loop, Central Valley Greenway bicycle pathway, Vancouver City College

Work Atmosphere & Communications Rating: B+

Recent social events employee participation in the "Gran Fondo" cycling events across Canada as well as the Vancouver Sun Run and Commuter Challenge Week, summer barbecues, Halloween and Christmas celebrations, staff and family appreciation shopping night, employee birthday and milestone celebrations
Cultural aspects employee sports teams, business casual dress, casual dress (e.g. jeans) daily, music while working
Employee communications intranet site, traditional/email suggestion box, internal social media

Financial Benefits & Compensation Rating: B+

Financial benefits note MEC has multiple employee groups, financial benefits may vary by position
Outside salary surveys participates in outside salary surveys every 12 months
Employee salary reviews individual salaries are reviewed every 12 months
Long-term savings matching RSP
Long-term planning life & disability insurance
Profit-sharing plan available to all employees
Referral bonuses (max) new employee referral bonuses (up to $3,000) for some positions
Signing bonuses available for some positions
Additional financial benefits interest-free loans (for bikes, boats and computers), product promotional deals

Health & Family-Friendly Benefits Rating: B+

Health plan note MEC has multiple employee groups, health plans may vary by position
Minimum hours worked for coverage 30 hours per week
Waiting period for coverage 90 days
Family coverage option yes
Dental coverage routine, restorative, orthodontics
Traditional coverage (e.g. prescription drugs) yes
Other health plan information employee assistance (EAP) plan, semi-private hospital room, physiotherapy, medical travel insurance, medical equipment and supplies, massage therapy, podiatrist, osteopathy, chiropractor, alternative coverage (e.g. accupuncture, naturopathy)
Family-friendly benefits note MEC has multiple employee groups, family-friendly policies may vary by position
Maternity top-up (mothers) up to 75% of salary for 17 weeks
Parental top-up (fathers) up to 75% of salary for 11 weeks
Adoption top-up up to 75% of salary for 11 weeks
Alternative work options flexible work hours

Vacation & Personal Time-Off Rating: B+

Vacation note MEC has multiple employee groups, vacation policies may vary by position
Vacation allowance new employees receive 2 weeks of paid vacation after their first year on the job
Vacation jump vacation increases after 2 years of employment
Maximum vacation allowance employees move to a maximum of 6 weeks of vacation over their career
Unpaid leave maximum 3 months
Self-funded/deferred salary leave maximum 3 months

Employee Engagement & Performance Rating: A

Employee performance reviews employees receive individual performance reviews every 12 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), year-end gifts for all employees (such as MEC gift cards, custom-made or selected MEC products)
In-house survey period in-house surveys are conducted every 12 months
Outside survey period outside consultant surveys are held every 12 months

Training & Skills Development Rating: B+

Career planning in-house career planning services
In-house training initiatives in-house training, leadership training, paid internships
Related tuition subsidies employer covers up to 100% of tuition per year
Annual tuition maximum employer pays up to $1,000 in tuition subsidies for job-related courses per year
Unrelated tuition subsidies employer covers up to 100% of tuition per year for courses unrelated to current position
Unrelated tuition maximum employer pays up to $1,000 in tuition subsidies per year for courses unrelated to current position

Community Involvement Rating: A+

Scope of charitable involvement local, national
Employee charitable involvement employees are involved in selection of charities, employees receive paid time off to volunteer, (up to 2 paid days)
Total employee volunteer hours (on company time) over 693 hours last year
Total number of charities supported last year approximately 315 charitable and community organizations were supported last year
Some of the community organizations supported Spin Sisters, Parkbus, Association Recreative Milton-Parc, Urban Native Youth Association, Spirit North, Les Chèvres de Montagnes, Bruce Peninsula Biosphere Association, 100 Wild Islands Responsible Recreation and Stewardship Initiative
Community highlight MEC's community investment program features three pillars: reducing barriers to outdoor activity (and increasing the number of of outdoor enthusiasts); encouraging responsible outdoor recreation through good environmental stewardship practices; and aiding in the conservation of areas of significant ecological or outdoor recreational value for sustainable, long-term recreational use. Through the company's dedicated community investment program, a team of employees review funding requests and assess which best fit the co-operatives criteria. Additionally, regional committees comprised of employees and store managers help to select initiatives most relevant to their respective region.

Recognized as one of Canada's Greenest Employers

Here are some of the reasons why Mountain Equipment Co-op was selected as one of Canada's Greenest Employers (2018):

  • MEC conducts employee-led "dumpster dives" at all of its locations to understand where they are generating waste and to identify opportunities for further improvement
  • Across the co-operative, MEC and its employees have introduced many impressive initiatives to reuse and reduce waste where possible -- MEC was also one of the first retailers to eliminate the use of plastic shopping bags back in 2008 and as a result of its many initiatives, has consistently achieved impressive waste diversion rates
  • MEC developed a unique "MEC Green Building System and Policy" which draws upon the foundations of the Canadian Green Building Council, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), the US Green Building Council and the International Living Building Institutes Living Building Challenge 2.0 to help improve building design and performance -- all facilities are operationally carbon neutral through a combination of significant reductions in emissions as well as the purchase of renewable energy certificates
MEC employees practicing yoga onsite   (Photo credit: Ed White Photographics)

Highlights

Industry Retail Stores
Major Canadian hiring locations Kelowna BC, Langley BC, Halifax NS, Edmonton AB, Burlington ON, Vancouver BC, Victoria BC, Calgary AB, North Vancouver BC, London ON, Winnipeg MB, Toronto ON, Montréal QC, Longueuil QC, Barrie ON, Québec QC, Kitchener ON, Laval QC, North York ON
Full-time employees in Canada 819
Employee green team Sustainability Department
Senior executive who oversees initiatives Director of Sustainable Business Innovation
Green highlights eliminated single-use shopping bags back in 2008, use of "sushi-roll" packaging technique for MEC-branded gear (has eliminated use of approximately 140 tonnes of plastic since 2010), gear donations, gear swap program (enables member to trade or sell their unused gear), equipment rental program (from canoes to snowshoes), longstanding equipment repair services (over 10,000 repairs last year), ongoing program to work with designers and product managers to source more environmentally preferred materials for MEC-branded products (including 100% "Bluesign" materials, using recycled materials, PVC-free products, and organically grown cotton, to name a few initiatives), new Fair Trade Certified MEC-branded products
Extended recycling each location conducts annual employee-led "dumpster dives" to understand where they are generating waste and to identify opportunities for further improvement, battery recycling stations at each store location
Commuter amenities secure/sheltered bicycle parking, walk to public transit
In-house environmental audit yes
External environmental audit yes
Publishes sustainability report yes
Some of the green community initiatives Avalanche Canada, Alpine Club of Canada, Leave No Trace Canada, the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS), the International Mountain Bicycling Association Canada (IMBA), the Outdoor Council of Canada, Parks Canada, Outdoor Council of Canada, Association of Canadian Mountain Guides, Protect our Winters (POW), and 1% for the Planet
Head office LEED Platinum
Other location LEED Gold
Building footprint includes PV solar panels, rainwater collection, green roof, solar water heating, geothermal heating/cooling, electric vehicle charging stations, reclaimed building materials, 35% reduction in carbon emissions from facilities

The Career Directory

Mountain Equipment Co-op has been selected for The Career Directory, our guide to entry-level recruitment for recent college and university graduates.
MEC employees at the MEC-organized Vancouver Community Race

Highlights for New Grads

Industry Retail Stores
Major Canadian hiring locations Kelowna BC, Langley BC, Halifax NS, Edmonton AB, Burlington ON, Vancouver BC, Victoria BC, Calgary AB, North Vancouver BC, London ON, Winnipeg MB, Toronto ON, Montréal QC, Longueuil QC, Barrie ON, Québec QC, Kitchener ON, Laval QC, North York ON
Training subsidies for professional accreditation, online training, in-house training, in-house career planning services, leadership training
Annual tuition maximum employer pays up to $1,000 in tuition subsidies for job-related courses per year
Work benefits flexible work hours, employees receive paid time off to volunteer, (up to 2 paid days)
Vacation allowance new employees receive 2 weeks of paid vacation after their first year on the job

Academic fields recruited


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