It’s often said that people are the most important asset of any business and if you ask anyone at Traction on Demand, Canada’s Best Workplace in 2019, that statement rings true.
Adding to their already comprehensive list of family-friendly benefits, Traction on Demand (ToD) have just announced their newest initiative, the Traction Baby Benefits.
Under the new program, Tractionites who are expecting a baby will be eligible for a 12-week parental top-up. The program will run alongside national and provincial maternity/parental leave programs in Canada, India and the United States and will provide 12-weeks of paid leave for new parents, regardless of income.
“This is a huge step forward for us in aligning our values to our practices,” said Tanya Jarrett, Chief People Officer at Traction on Demand. “We want to ensure family and career can run parallel as we watch our Tractionite families grow.”
Aligning ToD with some of North America’s best parental leave practices, the new Traction Baby Benefits will be available for both caretakers of a new child, as well as to adoptive and non-gestational parents.
“We hope actions like this will make a meaningful difference in the lives of Tractionites and move us closer to a more equitable and inclusive society that we’re striving toward,” said Tanya.
In addition to the new initiative, ToD also has a plethora of family-friendly perks and benefits.
Flexibility and support
Flexibility really is the key to life. To complement their family-friendly approach, ToD offers a range of industry-leading initiatives that sets them apart as one of Canada’s best tech companies for families.
Work from home
Offering flexible work times and locations, ToD provides Tractionites with the option to work from home (or wherever), so they can focus on important tasks without the distractions of the office.
“We get it. Sometimes you need to work without interruption or within the convenience of your own home,” said Tanya. “One of the most valuable gifts we can give is the gift of flexibility. We really encourage parents to leverage this offering, so they can work in peace and enjoy a healthy work-life harmony.”
Bring your kids to work
All ToD office locations have dedicated family rooms, packed with games, crayons and toys to keep kids entertained all day long should you need to bring them into work with you. ToD also runs an annual Bring Your Kids to Work Day where mini-Tractionites enjoy a full day of activities from yoga classes to coding challenges.
“Last year we had around 40 kids come in with their parents,” said Jessica Demos, Workplace Experience Manager at ToD. “Not only does it provide a chance for families to get to know one another, but we also aim to teach the kids some fun skills in the process.”
Phased Return to Work
Things change quickly in the tech industry and coming back to work after time off can be jarring for some new parents. To overcome this, ToD offers a flexible 1-4 week phased return and re-boarding period, easing new parents back into a full workload.
Traction University Off-Boarding and Re-Boarding
ToD's in-house training team, Traction University (TU), aims to empower Tractionites through education. They have recently introduced an off-boarding and re-boarding program to gradually ease team members into and out of parental leave.
Jordan Casupang, Instructional Designer at TU, says re-boarding is a fantastic opportunity for new parents to introduce themselves back into work and ensure they’re not missing out on any important company updates.
“It feels like almost every week there’s a new initiative, program or product at ToD,” said Jordan. “We all know that the tech industry moves quickly, but imagine taking nine months off and coming back to all these updates at once. That’s where re-boarding sessions can really help break down the information and create a welcoming environment for new parents.”
Employee Assistance Program
Sometimes we can all do with some help. ToD fully funds an assistance program for Tractionites who are looking for some personal guidance or professional counselling for mental health, financial planning, time management or life events.
Building a community
Often more important than the perks or benefits is the sense of inclusivity and acceptance within a workplace. ToD offers some unique community-building initiatives, from family-friendly activities to annual retreats, that really push them to the forefront as one of Canada’s best tech companies for families.
This is an opportunity for ToD to get together as a company to celebrate friends, family and company success. Like many ToD events, the retreat is 100% family-friendly and provides Tractionites with an opportunity to kick back and relax outside of work. Past retreats have included activities such a rock climbing, kayaking and of course the annual Traction Olympics.
ToD has a getaway cabin located in Whistler, B.C., where teams can collaborate without distraction, and where Tractionites and their families can explore and relax. Whistlerhaus is available for team members to book throughout the year.
Bikes & Bytes Summer Camp
Forget archery and high ropes, Traction for Good’s Bikes & Bytes is the summer camp of the future. Held in partnership with Cycling BC, the camp runs for one week in Nelson and Burnaby, B.C. and includes an even mix of coding instruction and biking adventure. The summer camp is always a sell-out, but Tractionite families have access to a few guaranteed spots each year.
Family-friendly after work activities
On top of the other family events, ToD often plans family-friendly evenings that encourage parents to bring their families in for after-work festivities. Past examples include the Christmas-themed Gingerbread O’Clock, where kids and parents got to decorate their own gingerbread house and their annual Easter Egg hunt.
Dedicated family communication channel
ToD has a strong community of parents who support each other with information, donating items to each other and getting together. Team members can join the internal communications Slack channel #pub-parents to easily engage with other parents.
One of the biggest drawcards for anyone looking for a future employer is their health and wellness offering. ToD places Healthy Hearts and Minds as one of their core values and as such, has a comprehensive benefits package that positions them as one of Canada’s best tech companies for families.
“We value our physical and mental health,” said Tanya. “We want to support Tractionites and their families to live with balance, purpose and vitality.”
Personal Health Spending Account
All ToD team members are eligible for a Personal Spending Account to help cover eligible wellness expenses like gym memberships, ski passes and athletic gear to ensure employees stay happy and healthy.
While medical and dental benefits slightly alter for each country (India, United States, Australia and Canada), ToD ensures all Tractionites and their families have access to generous benefits packages that are well above industry standards.