Lorna Willner, Steam Whistle’s HR manager, talks about the perks that keep employees interested.

Explain Steam Whistle’s profit sharing and shareholder plans.
Profit sharing is for everybody…even if, for the year, an employee does just 12 shifts, he or she would still be eligible to participate but on a pro-rated basis.

Once an employee has worked for a year, he or she is eligible to buy shares of the company, but this depends on how many shares are available for sale from our private investors. There are currently about 60 employee shareholders.

What is your vacation policy?
When you first start, you’re entitled to three weeks (15 days), and each year you’re with the company, that increases by one day. On your birthday, you get a half-day off. We also offer six sick days per year. If, at the end of the year, an employee has any unused sick days, he or she can carry over half of these unused days to use as vacation the following year. It’s a little incentive to earn a couple of extra days.

After five years of service, employees are taken on a week-long trip, touring breweries, beer halls and festivals in Germany and the Czech Republic. After 10 years of service, employees enjoy a six-week sabbatical.

What other rewards do you offer?
We offer beer vouchers to all employees each week. And there’s quite a lively social calendar: we have all-staff events, barbecues or pizza evenings to celebrate birthdays, an annual summer picnic, a Christmas party and a ski trip.

What is the employee turnover rate?
The turnover is very low. We have very few people who just resign—the only people who move on are the students who come in to help out over the summer and quite often come back the following year. People really do enjoy working here.

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Copyright © 2019 Transcontinental Media G.P. This article first appeared in Benefits Canada.

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