Recognized as one of BC's Top Employers (2021):
By Richard Yerema and Kristina Leung, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Feb 15, 2021)
Here are some of the reasons why Engineers and Geoscientists BC was selected as one of BC's Top Employers (2021):
- Engineers and Geoscientists BC supports its new moms with maternity and parental leave top-ups (to 90 per cent for 31 weeks) as well as its new dads and adoptive parents with parental leave top-up (to 90 per cent for 16 weeks)
- Engineers and Geoscientists BC starts new employees with three weeks of paid vacation and offers the option for employees to receive additional time off through a formal earned days off program
- Engineers and Geoscientists BC encourages employees to save for life after work through matching RSP contributions
Flexible environment at Engineers and Geoscientists BC
Inclusivity, flexibility and communication are at the center of the “employees first” philosophy at Engineers and Geoscientists BC. Because when you’ve been around for 100 years, you learn how to treat your people right.
“We put our employees first and we do everything we can to support them so they can be at their best in fulfilling our mandate of public protection,” says Ann English, chief executive officer and registrar.
“If there’s stuff getting in the way, it’s our job as leaders to help them remove it and if you do that, results will follow.”
Headquartered in Burnaby, Engineers and Geoscientists BC licenses and regulates the province’s 37,000 engineers and geoscientists, setting and maintaining standards for entry and practice and providing professional development. It’s celebrating 100 years of operation.
The organization’s commitment to its employees was demonstrated dramatically in March when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. In addition to a near-seamless shift to working from home that included individual ergonomic assessments, employees were supported with an additional 10 paid sick days for illnesses related to COVID-19 and five additional family responsibility days.
Constant communication has been another key, with English sending out frequent personal emails to employees, giving them candid updates to keep everyone connected. In addition, check-ins and virtual town halls are held.
“We’re cognizant not to lose the personal touch and emphasize communication so people have a lifeline they can use,” says English.
Despite the serious nature of their regulatory work and the pandemic, employees have tried to make space for laughter. Virtual social events featuring “Two Truths and a Lie,” silly hat competitions and a fierce online Halloween costume contest bring much-needed levity.
“Some of our work is very serious and confidential, so to get through it, you have to laugh at yourself sometimes,” says Michelle Cheng, manager of examinations, geoscience, registration integrity and policy.
“We’re professional, but being able to relax sometimes and be silly together creates a different bond than just being colleagues.”
In July 2021, Engineers and Geoscientists BC will have the responsibility of regulating engineering and geoscience firms as well as individual professionals added to its workload. That doesn’t faze Cheng.
“I take great pride in my work,” she says. “Safe buildings and bridges are all part of it and have a profound impact on public safety. Even one mistake can be devastating, so we maintain the highest standards in everything we do.”