In fall 2021, the JTI-Macdonald team planted one tree for every employee with the support of Tree Canada / Arbres Canada, a non-profit organization dedicated to planting and nurturing trees in rural and urban environments.
JTI-Macdonald Corp. is being recognized for valuing its number one asset: People. The company, which has roots in Canada dating back to 1858, is being honoured as Canada's #1 Top Employer 2022.
The certification comes from the highly regarded Top Employers Institute, which highlighted JTI-Macdonald Corp.'s commitment and innovative approaches to inclusion, equity, wellbeing and mental health, as well as work to optimize the hybrid work model and its new global family leave policy. The company employs more than 500 people across Canada, with manufacturing facilities in Montreal, administrative offices in Mississauga and sales offices across the country.
"People are JTI's most important asset, and we are investing in them to improve our employees' experience and deliver real progress," Alan Jackson, general manager of JTI-Macdonald, said in a release. "With initiatives like our equal family leave policy, JTI is acting on its commitment to employee wellbeing, diversity and gender equality. We are giving every parent equal opportunity to spend quality time with their children, without worrying about the impact it could have on their finances or careers."
JTI's new global family leave policy gives employees 20 weeks' paid leave, regardless of gender or sexual orientation or whether employees become parents by giving birth or through adoption or surrogacy. Leading by example, Jackson was among the first to tap into the new policy when his family welcomed a child in 2021.
"It is an honour to be certified by Top Employers Institute," said Nancy Bourdon, JTI-Macdonald's people & culture director. "Our people are at the heart of everything we do, and we aim to offer them the best possible working environment. In 2021, we leaned into the hybrid work model and did everything we could to provide our employees with support and flexibility. Performance and outcomes are what matter, not hours spent in the office. Under our new ways of working, we give employees the flexibility to split their time between in-person and remote work. We also introduced unlimited paid sick days and enhanced our vacation policy. To ensure these changes don't mean work encroaches on our employees' lives, we embraced core hours and digital tools to help people manage their working hours and protect their personal time."
Other steps JTI-Macdonald has taken to earn the spot of Canada's #1 Top Employer include:
- Personalized, comprehensive and wide range of training and learning opportunities tailored to individual learning and development needs (online instructor led learning, immersive, self-paced online or offline) to give all employees the opportunity to maximize their potential
- An increased emphasis on mental health and wellbeing, with 21% of employees now certified as Mental Health First Aiders
- Ensuring equal access to promotions and opportunities, simplifying hiring requirements to correct for unconscious bias and gender-balanced interview panel
- Giving employees opportunities during work hours to volunteer and matching personal donations and volunteered time to charitable causes
- Building a Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) advisory committee to guide and support JTI's journey towards a more equitable and inclusive workplace
- The creation of a workstream within the Diversity & Inclusion team to focus on mental wellbeing and optimization of the employee work-from-home experience that has included a calendar of virtual celebrations, education and awareness campaigns and virtual access to games, fitness classes, town-halls, national conferences, training and development, and year-end events
- Providing a home office catalogue to enhance remote work setups
Still, JTI-Macdonald isn't resting in its laurels. The company has set goals for the coming years that will build on its commitment to diversity, inclusion, employee wellbeing and career development. In addition, JTI-Macdonald's parent company, JTI, has been certified a Global Top Employer for the eighth year in a row: JTI earned the certification in all six regions and 66 countries in which it operates.