Great Place to Work® has just announced that Optimus SBR is on the 2022 list of Canada’s Best Workplaces™ for Hybrid Work! We proudly add this to our roster of awards which include Best Workplaces™ in Canada, Best Workplaces™ in Ontario, Best Workplaces™ in Professional Services, Best Workplaces™ for Giving Back, and Best Workplaces™ for Today’s Youth!

At Optimus SBR we recognize the value of work/life balance and that it doesn’t look the same for all employees, so finding balance is easier in a flexible work arrangement. Although a flexible work environment for our employees has always been an area of focus, the unprecedented challenges presented by the pandemic really brought it to the forefront.

Optimus SBR reacted quickly to the Covid restrictions and introduced new programs and supports to help our employees adapt to a virtual work environment.

Optimus Days, launched in January 2020, gives all of our employees one company-wide day off per month. This allows everyone additional time to focus on wellness. Optimus Days have been particularly important and appreciated given the extra pressures and challenges associated with the pandemic.

Optimus Lite, which means “no internal meetings” between 12:00 – 1:30 pm daily or Friday afternoons, was introduced in 2020 to reduce virtual screen fatigue. This gives individuals extra time for childcare responsibilities, a chance to get a break from their computers to exercise or get outside, or to have uninterrupted focus time.

Optimus Etiquette Guide helps employees by providing guidelines for how best to interact and connect with people in a virtual environment.

Get Comfortable, introduced during the pandemic, has offered employees the opportunity to borrow equipment from the office, such as a computer monitor or an ergonomically designed chair, to make their home workplace more comfortable.

Virtual Events were held to provide fun, camaraderie, engagement, and make employees feel more connected while working at home.

Lounging with Leaders – interactive Q&A sessions hosted by members of our Executive Leadership Team to get to know them on a more personal level.

Tuesday Talks – themed panel discussions highlight members across different areas of the organization. Panels have included proposal writers, employees with 10+ years of service, Principals, and individuals who have been actively involved in charitable activities within the community.

Happy Hour Hang – these monthly events provided an opportunity for employees to come together virtually to chat, have some fun, and play games. There was something for everyone – Jeopardy, Finish the Lyrics, Charades, Caption This, and Wingin’ It.

Summer Palooza – the pandemic has been difficult for everyone, so we wanted to give lighten things up in the summer with a 10-week swag giveaway event where someone in our organization was gifted a prize on a weekly basis, at the end, every employee was gifted a swag box filled with summer-related goodies like a frisbee, t-shirt, and JBL Bluetooth speaker.

Beyond accommodating employees in a hybrid work environment with equipment for their home offices and virtual events to stay connected, Optimus SBR has addressed the huge toll the pandemic has taken on mental health.

Building on everything we have already achieved for mental wellness in the workplace, we have taken our commitment to the next level. One key initiative has been Optimus Chats, a program where employees are paired with a different colleague each month for a 15-minute chat.

As Covid restrictions have lifted and employees have started to return to the office on a part-time basis, Optimus SBR has put concerted effort into creating a workplace that people want to go back to.

We’ve developed a staggered and flexible return to office program which has included team building lunches and meet and greet cocktail parties for new hires. Our hybrid work environment will no doubt continue to evolve as we continue to seek feedback from our employees on what hybrid workplace model will best meet their needs.

For more information please visit www.greatplacetowork.ca.

Optimus Think


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