Recognized as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2024) and Greater Toronto's Top Employers (2023):
Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Nov 16, 2023)
Here are some of the reasons why Questrade Financial Group was selected as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers (2024) and Greater Toronto's Top Employers (2023):
- Questrade helps employees balance their work and personal lives with flexible hours and hybrid work options (and assists with needed home office equipment) -- and offers a unique program that lets employees work abroad for up to 90 days per year
- Questrade helps employees plan for the future with retirement planning assistance services along with matching RSP contributions -- the company also offers a year-end bonus program along with a range of helpful financial perks, from new employee referral bonuses to discounted home and auto insurance
- Questrade encourages employees to keep fit and healthy through a number of initiatives, including discounted fitness club memberships, weekly yoga sessions, quarterly wellness workshops and a fun wellness challenge (with prizes), access to the Headspace app (includes over 1,000 hours of guided exercises and videos), and very generous coverage for mental health services ($10,000 each year)
A caring culture covers Questrade Financial Group
Tyler Haw went straight from university into customer support at Questrade Financial Group. Eight years later, he is senior corporate trainer creating materials for a company with over 2,000 employees worldwide.
“I have been very fortunate to have had a lot of career growth in the years I’ve been here,” Haw says. “My journey is not unique; many others have also grown with the organization.”
Questrade Financial Group is headquartered in Toronto. Through its companies, it provides securities and foreign currency investment, professionally managed investment portfolios, mortgages, insurance, real estate services, financing, and more.
“Our mission is we care deeply about helping Canadians become much more financially successful and secure,” says Edward Kholodenko, president and CEO. “And that is a philosophy we live and breathe from our front-line employees to those who work behind the scenes.
“Frankly, it’s a fantastic way of living where you get up in the morning knowing you’re going to help somebody.”
Haw says that a caring culture permeates his experience at the firm. Everyone was open to talking with him, notably about how job openings are made available.
“I had people reaching out to let me know of open positions they thought I’d be a great fit for,” says Haw.
An emphasis on continuing education is another example of the company’s culture. Earlier in his journey, Haw was having difficulties training certain personalities. His manager encouraged him to find a course to help him, and the company would cover the cost of the tuition.
“I found one I thought would be very beneficial,” says Haw. “It drastically changed how I trained individuals where previously I had struggled.”
Questrade Financial Group focuses heavily on training, team-building and volunteering, partnering with Food Banks Canada to provide one day’s worth of meals for every account opened and JA Central Ontario to equip young people with financial knowledge. Quarterly town halls are held to share business updates, recognize accomplishments and gather employee feedback. A few years ago, employees suggested RRSP matching, which the company adopted, emphasizing how they care for their employees’ financial success and security.
“The way that we take care of our customers is also the way we take care of our employees,” says Kholodenko. “We’re really focused on making sure they’re happy because what’s on the inside goes on to the outside.”
Employees often get direct feedback from Kholodenko. Leaders circulate glowing reports employees receive from customers.
“I personally respond to just about every email thanking the front-line team so they know how much we appreciate them,” Kholodenko says.
In 2022, Haw approached his leaders about participating in the Sporting Life 10-km run supporting Campfire Circle, a summer camp for children undergoing oncology treatment. The resulting camaraderie thrilled him.
“My leaders gave me the autonomy to run with it,” says Haw. “I’ve organized it, and in just two years, we’ve raised $30,000 with the help of 150 employees. Our engagement in this event would not have been possible without the full support of my leaders and our organization.”
Haw wants to stay with a company that does right by its employees, and with Questrade Financial Group, he feels he has found his fit.
“I’ve really enjoyed my past eight years. Ideally, I’ll stay for eight more years and even more so,” Haw says.
This aligns with the CEO's vision. “As our company grows, we want our people to grow with us. They play a key role in helping us revolutionize the future of financial services,” says Kholodenko.
Questrade is about open doors, open minds and growth
Things changed a lot for Rachel Bai when she arrived at Questrade Inc., Canada’s fastest-growing online broker. A recent graduate in management from Western University, she had tried working for a big bank but found she couldn’t get the career support or collaboration she needed.
Then she joined Questrade as a customer service specialist in late 2017. “So on day one, I told them I had a background in marketing, and this is something that I would like to work on in the coming years,” she says. Her supervisor suggested she write a business plan for marketing. “I handed it in the next day – he was surprised at how quickly.”
Soon after, Bai was invited to do a presentation of the plan. Impressed, the leaders gave her a four-month secondment in marketing, followed by a promotion to team lead in customer service.
Bai was later promoted to assistant product manager and then promoted again to product manager, self-directed investing in the product management department, where she works with marketing and software developers to ensure customers get the best experience possible in their online trading and investing.
To Bai, that kind of support and responsiveness defines Questrade. “We have this open-door policy,“ she says. “You can approach your manager or other people whenever you want, with a question or an opinion or just to tell them about some of your ideas. It’s really cool.”
In fact, she finds the corporate culture “very open-minded.” “No matter what position I’ve held, I feel my voice has been heard. That’s something I really appreciate, and I feel supported as well.
“It’s also a very diverse environment. On my team, I’m from China, and we have people from Bangladesh, Brazil and Britain, all coming together and sharing our cultures. It’s nice.”
President and CEO Edward Kholodenko says flexibility, collaboration and supporting the mission are key at Questrade. “We are really focused on hiring people who are committed to doing everything on behalf of the client,” he says. “Our mission is to help Canadians become much more financially successful and secure. And so the staff that join us are really becoming a part of something bigger than themselves. We’re here for the long term to really help Canadians to do something good.”
The company’s newly renovated office space at Yonge and Finch is especially attractive, he says. “We offer our people the choice to work where they can thrive, be most productive, and best serve our customers,” he says, but he adds: “Everybody loves the team collaboration that you get face to face when you’re there. Certain days tend to be a little busier, and some teams say, hey, why don’t we all get together on a Thursday, for example, and we’ll order a team lunch.”
The new offices feature stand-up desks, foosball, ping pong, a basketball area, collaboration spaces and video conference rooms. Bai is a fan. “Along with those amenities, it’s a nice area with lots of restaurants”, she says. “And our building is over the final station of the subway, where you can enter your office directly. Definitely a great feature!”
Bai adds: “My journey at Questrade has been filled with opportunities, challenges, excitement and fun. I am grateful to be part of the growth.”