Recognized as one of BC's Top Employers (2023):
Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Feb 13, 2023)
Here are some of the reasons why Concert Properties Ltd. was selected as one of BC's Top Employers (2023):
- Concert Properties supports a peer-to-peer recognition program and offers up to five additional paid bonus days off per year as a reward for exceptional performance (at manager's discretion)
- Concert Properties makes the commute to work a little easier with a public transit subsidy of up to $1,000 per year -- additionally, employees can take advantage of a number of amenities when working onsite, including free access to a fitness facility, a community garden, and regular deliveries of fresh fruit
- Concert Properties supports ongoing employee development through in-house and online training initiatives, as well as tuition subsidies for courses related to their current position
Concert Properties puts people and community first
After two decades in human resources, Aran Clarke wanted her next role to be with a company that aligned with her personal values. When the opportunity to join the Vancouver-headquartered Concert Properties arose, she knew it was the right move.
“I was attracted to Concert Properties’ values of quality, integrity and service excellence – as well as the fact that we are so involved in the community,” says Clarke, senior vice president, people experience. “And these values extend inward. We spend a lot of time and energy building a healthy internal culture.”
Concert Properties was founded in 1989 with the mandate to create assured rental housing. Today it has grown and diversified, becoming a real estate corporation wholly owned by 19 union and management pension plans that represent over 200,000 Canadians.
But while its portfolio has expanded greatly over the last 30-plus years to include condominiums, seniors’ active aging communities, industrial and commercial properties, and public infrastructure projects across Canada, the company has the same feel it did in its early days: its people are the priority.
For Adam Fletcher, director of IT, infrastructure and operations, who joined in 2019, this was one of the many things that were appealing.
“I was looking for that feel of a smaller, intimate company,” says Fletcher. “Building community within and outside of the organization is part of the fabric of this company. We’re about doing the right thing for our people and community.”
As an organization with many different areas, the culture nurtures the growth of existing employees.
“We’re a diverse organization and, partly due to that, I’ve never been prescriptive about educational background or experience,” says Clarke. “We focus on finding the right people. Our development managers and directors are senior and versatile, and often look for co-ordinators to join the team – which is a neat, entry-level job to get in the door of the development world.”
Focusing on people is also foundational to onboarding. As part of the buddy program, new hires are paired with a colleague from a different part of the organization.
“They get to know another aspect of the business, which helps with cross-collaboration,” says Clarke.
Fletcher has served as a buddy three times and found the program to be beneficial to both parties.
“It promotes camaraderie and connection across the company from day one,” he says. “Our people are immersed in their work. Being a buddy is a good opportunity to step outside your usual role, and chat with people about their work and aspirations.”
The company also supports employee development through internal programs and tuition reimbursement.
“I’ve taken general management courses through the Sauder School of Business at UBC,” says Fletcher. “And I recently began taking IT service management and strategy courses online. The company has been generous in funding my growth.”
Fletcher adds that Concert Properties supports employee health and wellness through generous benefits packages, including fully covered, employer paid-health and dental benefits, and extended coverage on services offered by registered massage therapists and registered naturopathic doctors.
In addition to an in-building gym with showers, Concert Properties reimburses employees’ fitness expenses, including gym or studio memberships and home fitness equipment.
Post-pandemic, the company offers a flexible hybrid working model. It’s just as important that the in-office work experience is positive and many programs, like allowing dogs, have been introduced. There are also fun team-building events like streaming last fall’s World Cup and ordering pizzas so staff could cheer on Team Canada.
It’s all part of building a healthy company culture and much of it is employee-driven.
“We listen to what they want and need, and we deliver,” says Clarke.