Recognized as one of Alberta's Top Employers (2023):
Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Jan 30, 2023)
Here are some of the reasons why PRIMED Medical Products, Inc. was selected as one of Alberta's Top Employers (2023):
- PRIMED maintains generous time-off programs that enable employees to rest, reset, and recharge -- policies include three weeks of starting vacation allowance, additional paid time off during the winter holiday (total of six days) and up to 10 paid personal days each year
- PRIMED supports new mothers with maternity leave top-up (100 per cent of salary for two weeks followed by 85 per cent of salary for an additional 12 weeks), the option to phase-in their return to work, and the convenience of onsite child care
- PRIMED supports a variety of charitable initiatives each year and manages the Days of Giving community outreach program, providing employees with paid leave for community service
At PRIMED, young talent helps drive fast growth
Coming out of the University of British Columbia with a finance degree, Jeremy Johnson-Silvers could have followed some of his fellow graduates into traditional careers with accounting firms or big banks. Instead, he returned to his Edmonton hometown and joined PRIMED Medical Products.
“PRIMED offered me an opportunity to dive right in to project work and actually have an impact on the business,” says Johnson-Silvers, manager of corporate development. “I could see that what I was working on was making a difference to the bottom line.”
Founded in 1995, PRIMED initially imported and distributed Chinese-manufactured personal protective equipment (PPE) such as face masks, medical gowns and examination gloves, among other products. However, in the early 2000s the company began designing and manufacturing its own PPE. PRIMED now has five manufacturing facilities – three in China, one in Laos and another in Cambridge, Ont. – and is the largest supplier of these products to the Canadian health-care market.
President and CEO David Welsh says PRIMED has grown quickly, and achieved a dominant position in the Canadian market, largely on the strength of talent that the company has recruited and trained.
“The number of individuals who work here and have grown up within the company is pretty substantial,” says Welsh. “Some of our most senior people have been with the company 20 years-plus and it was their first job with a bachelor of commerce or a science degree.”
That is no coincidence. PRIMED has had an internship program for over 15 years and routinely hires up to a dozen interns a year.
“It’s been a huge benefit to us,” says Welsh. “The young people bring energy. It’s part of our culture and our responsibility to the community to give these opportunities to young people from the Edmonton area.”
Johnson-Silvers spent two summers as an intern, first as a sales associate and then as an assistant to Welsh. In the latter role, he accompanied his boss on a site selection tour for a new manufacturing plant that took them to the Dominican Republic, Mexico and Southeast Asia.
After he graduated, Johnson-Silvers was handed responsibility to manage the construction of the new Ontario manufacturing facility and handled similar duties while the Laos plant was being built.
“The company pushes the junior staff to take these stretch assignments and really learn, but there’s always a safety net,” says Johnson-Silvers. “We always have someone who knows the business and is able to support you.”
PRIMED may be a smaller company, but as a fast-growing enterprise, it always has new positions and opportunities opening up.
“The organizational charts that we build for the future are already set,” says Welsh. “We know what we’re expecting for the next three years, which creates clear career pathways.”
To date, PRIMED’s success has rested largely on recruiting young talent and allowing them to grow with the company, and that approach will likely continue.
“Our business is specific enough that the value of developing people internally cannot be denied,” says Welsh. “It’s very hard to go outside and find the right talent and experience because we’re a unique business.”