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CEO to present at Workforce One-Stop 2012

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At the end of this month, Donna Smith, Vice President of Career Edge Organization, will be leading a workshop at The Conference Board of Canada’s Workforce One-Stop 2012 conference, a rebranding of previous conferences focusing on workforce training and career development (most notably, the National Consultation on Career Development and Workforce Learning, aka NATCON).

At last year’s NATCON conference, we presented our second instalment of employer-targeted Gen Y research. Our myth-busting presentation identified what workplace culture actually means to Gen Y, the impact it has on grads’ career planning, and the kinds of research they do to seek and select their employers of choice.

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Congratulations to Canada’s Best Employers for New Canadians!

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Yesterday, Canada’s Top 100 Employers announced the 2012 winners of the Best Employers for New Canadians competition in a special editorial feature in the Globe and Mail. This competition recognizes the employers with the best initiatives and programs that support newcomers entering the Canadian workforce. In part of this recognition, we were very pleased to see that 30% of the winners listed were selected partly due to their participation in the Career Bridge paid internship program.

Career Edge Organization (CEO) would like to take this opportunity to congratulate and commend these Canadian employers who have provided leadership in recognizing and valuing the skills, credentials, and global perspectives that internationally qualified professionals bring to the workplace.

We would also like to offer special thanks and congratulations to the employers that have either expressed an interest in connecting with CEO to fulfill talent strategies for internationally qualified professionals, or have formally partnered with the Career Bridge program to support the onboarding of new Canadians through paid internships, while maintaining a strong commitment to an inclusive and welcoming corporate culture:

BMO Financial Group
Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC)
Deloitte & Touche LLP
Humber College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning
Loblaw Companies Ltd.
Mississauga, City of
Mount Sinai Hospital
Ontario Public Service
Royal Bank of Canada (RBC)
St. Michael’s Hospital
Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD)
Telus Corp.
Xerox Canada Inc.
York, Regional Municipality of

Mentoring & Managing Multi-Generations: 5 tips for employers

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Last month, our own VP, Donna Smith, was joined by Lauren Friese, Founder of, and Mandy Sutherland, Senior Consultant, Applied Research and Consulting at Steelcase to share insights and best practices around leveraging the strengths of multiple generations in the workplace.

The “Mentoring & Managing Multi-Generations” workshop took place at the Economic Developers Council of Ontario (EDCO)’s 55th Annual Conference and Showcase where members and other engaged professionals gathered to exchange information and learn from informative and forward-thinking presentations that are transferable to their respective communities and workplaces.

During her segment of the workshop, Donna offered five tips to employers looking to develop collaborative, complementary, and sustainable multi-generational workplaces:

  1. Find the “lost” generation: Gen X is often overlooked as a result of being sandwiched between the persistent presence of Baby Boomers and the impatient motivations of Gen Y. Leverage the knowledge and experience of Gen X workers by encouraging them to coach Gen Y workers. It’s a win-win situation: Gen Y get the support and guidance they need to develop professionally, while Gen X gain leadership and mentoring skills.
  2. Establish semi-formal task forces: Bridge generational gaps and impart knowledge by encouraging ongoing networking and professional development opportunities.
  3. Compensation packages based on generational priorities: Opt for flexible compensation/benefit packages that suit the needs of each generation. For example, Gen Y look for dental coverage for themselves, whereas Gen X prefer flex hours or child care for their kids, and Baby Boomers appreciate elder care for their parents.
  4. Understand what drives your employees and meet those needs both individually and as a group: Celebrate the different approaches of each generation, while staying focused on company objectives and project goals.
  5. Manage demographics – don’t just play to the biggest audience: Encourage projects that involve employees from different demographics. This goes beyond generational diversity; recognizing and celebrating differences in culture, gender, and ability all play into a healthy and productive workplace.

Addressing the needs of multiple generations

Furthermore, Donna suggests that the key to successfully implementing all of the above tips is having a clear and mutual understanding of how each generation – and their inherent diversity of culture, gender, and abilities – contribute to the overall business strategies and organizational fit.

We want to know what you’re doing to leverage the potential of each generation in the workplace! Share your tips with us by leaving a comment!

Internship Success with a Romantic Twist

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In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, we just had to share an internship success story with a romantic twist that has emerged from the Canadian Immigration Integration Program (CIIP)‘s referral program with Career Edge Organization that provides internship opportunities to eligible, job-ready CIIP clients immigrating to Ontario.

Recently, we were delighted to learn that a pair of CIIP clients from China were both successful in landing Career Bridge paid internship opportunities. To add to the charm of this news, we also learned that the two successful CIIP clients just happen to be husband and wife!

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Paid vs. Unpaid: the internship debate continues!

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On last night’s “Friendly Fire” radio talk show on CFRB Newstalk 1010, host Ryan Doyle introduced the call-in segment of the program by claiming that unpaid internships are “the only way that employers nowadays can combat the lackadaisical attitude [and] the over-expectations that kids have when they come out of university and college,” going on to argue that the internship-related foot-in-the-door and networking opportunities are forms of payment.

We respectfully disagree, and were pleased to hear that the majority of those calling into the show disagreed as well, supporting the paid internship alternative. “It is in my best interest to try to cultivate these young potential stars and bring them in with the right mindset,” said one employer in support of paying for an intern’s work. Another caller from the trades industry compared internships to trade apprenticeships that – in his experience – have always been tied to financial compensation, and didn’t see why white-collar internships would ever be unpaid when the worker is contributing in a equally meaningful way.

Earlier today, Mike Bullard picked up on his colleague’s topic in his CFRB radio program “Beyond the Mic”, and in contrast stated that employers should, “at least pay someone’s expenses when they’re on an unpaid internship.”

Unfortunately this bone of contention is nothing new, and has continued to be remarkably polarizing for both sides. We have certainly indicated Career Edge Organization’s position in the paid vs. unpaid debate with previous blog posts, strongly endorsing paid internships. But we want to hear your thoughts on the matter.

Take our poll or leave a comment to let us know your side when it comes to internship compensation.

Want to learn more? Listen to the podcasts of both CFRP shows, and read our previous blog posts that explore this issue by following the links below:

Friendly Fire Podcast – February 7, 2012
Beyond the Mic Podcast – February 8, 2012

“Paid vs. Unpaid internships: 4 reasons why it makes good business sense to pay your intern”
“What makes an internship a success? 4 things employers should know”

Career Edge Organization joins GE Canada in celebrating 500 interns

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Career Edge Organization is delighted to be celebrating the significant milestone of GE Canada’s 500th intern.

As one of the first organizations to start hiring Career Edge program interns in 1996, GE Canada has continued to leverage the potential of recent graduates, hiring their 500th intern this past December.

“This is an excellent program that brings incredible talent to GE,” notes Terry Peach, Manager of Human Resources, GE Canada.  “The caliber of graduates working in GE has been outstanding, we have offered approximately 40 percent of the intern’s full-time positions, and many of these individuals have gone on to leadership positions within the company.  Others have leveraged their work experience at GE Canada for jobs outside the company.”

GE hosted a celebratory event last Wednesday, bringing together many Career Edge alumni, including the company’s first and 500th interns: Stephanie Bangarth and Mehreen Khan.

Career Edge Organization would like to take this opportunity thank GE Canada for the continuous support of our paid internship programs, and we look forward to another 15 years of launching careers!

Click here to read the press release to learn more about GE Canada and Career Edge Organization’s successful partnership.

Career Edge Organization will be “inventing the future” with HRPA

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It’s official! Career Edge Organization will be joining the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA)  for one of Canada’s top HR professional development experiences: the HRPA 2012 Annual Conference & Trade Show “HR: 2012 and Beyond…Inventing the Future” occurring February 1 to 3 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

As trade show exhibitors, we are looking forward to networking with HR professionals from across Canada and from around the world, while examining the latest HR issues, ideas, challenges and opportunities together. With the theme of “futuristic HR” in mind, we got to thinking about what the HR landscape will look like for 2012 “and Beyond”, and couldn’t help but be reminded of an article that attempted to do just that… three and a half years ago.

In “Human Resources: The Big Issues” published on Bloomberg Businessweek back in 2008, Marshall Goldsmith spoke with Anna Minto and Chuck Scullion of the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) about BCG’s published report based on the findings of an ambitious survey of 4,700 executives in 83 countries and markets.

Goldsmith, who is coincidentally the opening keynote at this year’s HRPA Conference, interviewed Minto and Scullion about the “Creating People Advantage: How to Address HR Challenges Worldwide Through 2015” report, identifying three top HR challenges: managing talent, improving leadership development, and managing work-life balance.

Although these issues emerged from U.S. respondents, the Canadian HR community can certainly relate, and despite the survey being conducted in 2008, these issues are notably still pervasive. Looking to the year ahead and even further to 2015 (as per BCG’s survey), we would like to reiterate the suggestions and solutions from “Creating People Advantage…” that can help Canadian HR professionals mitigate these issues now and through 2015.

  • Managing Talent: When it comes to attracting, developing, and retaining talented individuals across all levels of any organization, the key is to take a creative approach in identifying high-potential talent pools. Minto and Scullion report that organizations are increasingly looking to source global talent as their creative solution, something Career Edge Organization knows a thing or two about.
  • Improving Leadership Development: With management and managerial engagement tied closely to managing talent, BCG recommends investing considerable resources (i.e. development programs and financial rewards) in prospective leaders, as these individuals are the ones hiring, mentoring, and promoting the talent mentioned in the previous point.
  • Managing Work-Life Balance: In contrast to the financial investment in developing future leaders within an organization, many employees now are seeking alternatives to traditional, financially-driven compensation packages. When it comes to compensation that contributes to work-life balance, flexible work arrangements are increasing in popularity, and are a great option to consider when appropriate.

With these three points in mind and now having reached the half-way mark between when this study was published and the anticipated relevance expiry, it’s clear that refocusing on these issues is critical to the immediate and future success of Canadian HR practices, especially with the significant demographic shifts being forecasted for beyond 2015.

As a solutions-based organization, Career Edge Organization is looking forward to discussing and addressing these challenges and more with you next week at the HRPA 2012 Annual Conference & Trade Show!

Ringing in a New Year of optimism and change

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After a highly eventful – and occasionally exhausting – 2011, the New Year has certainly been welcomed as an opportunity to embrace change and refocus on new projects and priorities.

At Career Edge Organization (CEO), we have already begun transitioning through various organizational shifts over the past couple months, most notably being the unveiling of our new and improved website. This exciting milestone in CEO’s history has brought us ever closer to our ongoing objective of meeting and exceeding the needs of our stakeholders. In 2012, we resolve to continuously improve the quality of our services by using our website as a solid foundation along with our client relationship approach to bringing your talent needs into focus.

In addition to the evolution of our online presence, our social media initiatives (including the CEO blog) welcome a new voice – mine!

Please allow me to introduce myself: I am Sydney Helland, Marketing & Communications Coordinator. Having launched my career at Career Edge Organization through a Career Edge internship nearly two years ago, I have experienced first-hand the effectiveness of our internship model. Since joining in early 2010, I have been fortunate enough to have been mentored by fantastic marketing professionals, and am proud to be the new representative of CEO in our social media forums. In 2012, I look forward to engaging in conversations with Canada’s HR community by sharing insights, perspectives and expertise from Career Edge Organization.

On behalf of Career Edge Organization, I would like to wish you a very happy and prosperous New Year and thank you for your ongoing support during these exciting times as we continue working together to meet your recruitment needs and put diverse, qualified talent to work in 2012.

Tell us how we can help with your 2012 recruitment resolutions! Feel free to comment here, or contact us today!

Introducing the new!

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Today is a special day in Career Edge Organization history as we are proud to unveil our new and improved website,

Our new website has been a labour of love that was a collaborative effort, not only of our team but of all our stakeholders, including our host employers, alumni, interns and registrants. We took everyone’s input, needs and ideas into consideration, and the result is something we are very proud of.

Of course, no website is perfect. There may always be glitches or areas to improve, but we trust our site will meet all your needs and beyond! Some of our new features include:

  • One website for all your needs – is now your one-stop-shop for sourcing, hiring and managing recent graduates, graduates with disabilities and/or internationally qualified professionals. One login will give you access to all three paid internship programs, internship postings, current and past interns, a wide selection of resources, and much more.
  • Simple navigation, intuitive design – We’ve combined state-of-the-art technology with user-friendly features to create a stylish and universally accessible website to meet your business needs.
  • Intern management made easy – Finding talent has never been easier! Whether you are posting an internship, completing a hire or using the new performance management tool, our website will guide you through all online processes with easy to follow instructions, “info pop-ups,” comprehensive FAQs and video demonstrations.
  • Practical tools and resources – Our employer resources have all been updated to reflect our new look and our growing knowledge in the areas of diversity, recruitment, Gen Y, and much more.
  • Personal dashboard – Your “Activity Log” will help you stay informed and organized without cluttering your email inbox! Upon logging in you will be greeted with your personal dashboard featuring Messages, Alerts and Notices.
  • Reporting 2.0 – We know how important it is to track and monitor your hiring activity. That’s why simple reporting is integrated throughout our website. Need more information? Talk to your Client Relations Manager about our custom reports.
  • Online performance management tool – To ensure both employers and interns get the most out of their internship experiences, we’ve created this proprietary tool to help guide participating Coaches, Managers and HR professionals through the process.
Please enjoy exploring our website! If you have any suggestions, feedback or  questions, feel free to leave us a comment here on the blog, or visit the Contact Us page of our new website!