Canadian Electrical Wholesaler

November 3, 2021

EIN Swati Vora EFC 400By Swati Vora-Patel

The race to acquire top talent is contingent on creative recruitment and retention strategies that support employees’ new motivations: flexibility, purposeful work and supportive incentives.

Talent availability continues to be a key concern among business leaders in the electrical industry: in fact, over 60% of EFC members surveyed said they do not have a robust talent pipeline in place. This pipeline is even further constrained as a result of ongoing employment challenges spurred on by the pandemic.

A global phenomenon known as “The Great Resignation” is underway which reflects a wave of workers who are strongly considering leaving their jobs in search for work that is more closely aligned with their interests with employers who provide flexible accommodations and serve a strong purpose. While ‘The Great Resignation’ spans all generations, younger Canadians are mostly contributing to this trend: in fact, global staffing firm, Robert Half reported that 33% of employed Gen Z’s and millennials in Canada have plans to pursue a new job, post-pandemic.

The IBM Institute for Business Value undertook research to understand the pressure points felt by inter-generational workers. The following chart shows some of the common reasons for the mass exodus:

CEW Swati

Source: https://www.ibm.com/thought-leadership/institute-business-value/report/employee-expectations-2021

These drivers demonstrate new motivations and expectations that employees require in their search for a ‘good-fit’ employer. It is essential for businesses to develop creative attraction and retention strategies to includes new accommodation factors to compete for talent. While many organizations have implemented flexible hours/weeks, competitive salaries and enriched learning and development programs, other creative measures are critical. The following are examples of other strategies best-in-class companies are providing to secure and retain talent:

Work-from-home policies
Maintaining work-life balance and choosing the optimal work environment, continues to be a key motivator for employees. While work-from-home (WFM) accommodations don’t apply to all functions within a company, channel partners in our industry are largely open to continuing WFH policies for positions that can accommodate this option. According to results from an EFC survey, over 80% of HR professionals that participated in the survey said they will continue to allow employees to work-from-home, post-pandemic. Employers have had a positive experience with employees working from home over the past 18 months. Survey respondents confirmed:

  • WFH policies have generally been effective
  • Employee productivity and performance have been high during the pandemic
  • Employee engagement/involvement in organizational goals are aligned

In the months to follow, employers will need to closely examine how to operate a hybrid workforce to maintain productivity and performance, while also protecting their company culture.

Health and wellness support
While employees have enjoyed the benefits of WFH, this pandemic has affected the overall well-being of many. As we begin to emerge from the pandemic, it is promising to see that our industry is placing a stronger focus on the mental health and well-being of their employees. Over half of members surveyed by EFC have already added, or plan to add, mental health and wellness programs to support employees. Such programs include:

  • Flex benefits
  • Staff fitness challenges
  • Yoga and meditation classes
  • Health coaching and nutrition workshops
  • Fitness equipment allowances

Recently, Great Place to Work® released a list of the best workplaces for mental wellness in Canada – check out which organizations were named best-in-class companies and what measures they have in place: https://www.greatplacetowork.ca/en/best-workplaces/best-workplaces-mental-wellness-2021

Remote work
This pandemic has changed the mindset of where employees can login and work from. When you consider the limitless work locations, the rising housing costs, compressed talent pipeline, remote work has given way to a new stream of opportunities to source and acquire talent. For the first time ever, the number of fully remote, six-figure job opportunities have exceeded those jobs available in any metropolitan North American city! The world has become our oyster and it is time to think differently about how organizations can secure the talent they need to support their business going forward.

Creative incentives
Several companies have further heightened their recruitment efforts through creative strategies. Take for example, a housing incentive benefit that an Ontario engineering firm provides to its employees. This firm offers staff $20,000 to help buy their first home in this scorching market. This incentive is available to all staff – the only requirement is that the employee must remain at the company for a minimum of three years after receiving the funds. While this isn’t something all companies can provide, it’s an example of new strategies that companies have introduced to attract top talent.

Building Your Talent Bench-Strength
It’s time to be getting more creative in how employees’ work-life needs are supported. Developing strategies and policies that reflect flexibility, purposeful work and supportive incentives is key to building your talent bench-strength and fuelling the motivation your workforce requires to adapt to the evolving world of work.

EFC members are invited to join EFC’s HR Network to learn about the latest recruitment and retention strategies. The next network meeting will be held on November 17th and will examine what business leaders and HR professionals can do to address and overcome “The Great Resignation”. Contact John Jefkins at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for participation and meeting details.

Swati Patel is VP, Marketing & Channel Development, Electro-Federation Canada.

Swati Vora-PatelTalent availability continues to be a key concern among business leaders in the electrical industry: in fact, over 60% of EFC members surveyed said they do not have a robust talent pipeline in place. This pipeline is even further constrained as a result of ongoing employment challenges spurred on by the pandemic.

A global phenomenon known as “The Great Resignation” is underway which reflects a wave of workers who are strongly considering leaving their jobs in search for work that is more closely aligned with their interests with employers who provide flexible accommodations and serve a strong purpose. 

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Building Permits - September 2021The total value of building permits rose 4.3% to $10.1 billion in September, led by Ontario (+6.3%). Construction intentions in the residential sector were up 8.2%, while the non-residential sector decreased 3.2%.


On a constant dollar basis (2012=100), building permits increased 3.4% to $6.9 billion.

Ontario drives residential permits up

High-value permits for two new condo buildings valued at over $300 million in the cities of Mississauga and Toronto helped push Ontario's multi-family permits up 40.4% to $1.7 billion in September. 

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John KerrBy John Kerr

Consolidation is a natural evolution in any industry: technology changes, customers demand more, and the need to drive costs all contribute to this activity. The Canadian electrical market is mature but opportunities still exist in its related segments.

The reality is we are entering a new stage driven by how we define ourselves and how we respond to customer needs. We all understand segmentation today more than ever and desire to provide end users with greater value. 

 

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Gross domestic product by industry - August 2021Real gross domestic product (GDP) rose 0.4% in August, led by increases in accommodation and food services, retail trade and transportation. The continued easing of public health restrictions and further reopening across the country increased demand across many close contact service industries.


Overall, 15 of 20 industrial sectors were up as growth in services-producing industries (+0.6%) more than offset a decline in goods-producing industries (-0.1%).

 

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AD GrowthAD’s Electrical-Canada Division virtually welcomed members and supplier partners for its five-day 2021 Virtual North American Meeting on Oct. 25 - 29, 2021 with the goal of facilitating strategic conversations that help the division devise new ways to stay ahead of the competition.

The event facilitated over 1,200 face-to-face meetings with 40 member companies and 62 supplier companies, cultivating relationship, allowing participants to share best practices and enabling open communication.

 

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EvolutionExpanding its North American footprint, leading control and automation manufacturer RTI today announced that it has named Evolution Home Entertainment Corp., a wholesale distributor of residential technology products, as the second RTI distribution partner for the Canadian market.


Evolution serves over 500 dealers across Canada, who now have the opportunity to get certified for the full line of RTI smart home control and automation products. With products shipping nationwide from its warehouse in Concord, Ontario, Evolution will also offer training and local dealer support to its dealers installing RTI systems.

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SignifyThird quarter 20211


• Signify's installed base of connected light points increased from 86 million in Q2 21 to 92 million in Q3 21

• Sales of EUR 1,643 million; Comparable Sales Growth of -4.8%, impacted by global supply chain disruptions

• Order book increased by 90% in Q3 21 vs. Q3 20

• LED-based sales represented 83% of total sales (Q3 20: 82%)

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Greg WalkerThe Continental Automated Buildings Association begins a new chapter with the appointment of Greg Walker as CEO, succeeding Ron Zimmer. Greg has been with CABA for almost 8 years working closely with the Board of Directors and leading the CABA research program and general operations. 

Mr. Walker is a Certified Association Executive (CAE) with over 15 years of experience working with associations, government agencies, universities, not-for-profit and Fortune 500 organizations. He holds a B.A. and B.Sc. from the University of Windsor and an M.Sc. from Dalhousie University.


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This past July, Kerith Richards, who has worked for Service Wire Company for the last seven years, was selected as one of tED Magazine's prestigious "30 under 35" winners. 

"I was so surprised and totally honored. It meant a lot to me that my boss, and my company, thought highly of me to nominate me - and then to be compared and chosen from the other surely incredible nominees was pretty cool, too," said Richards of earning the distinction. "I was running out of time, I'll be 35 at the end of this year, but I feel like I'm just getting started in this industry." 

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