Why a well-known non-profit organization uses Rise
Client Stories 4 minute read

Why a well-known non-profit organization uses Rise

Rise | September 12, 2017

Last month, we took a trip to see one of our incredible non-profit clients, the David Suzuki Foundation, to learn more about their workplace culture and their experience with using our HRIS -- the Rise People HR, group benefits, and payroll platform.

About the David Suzuki Foundation

As stated on the Foundation's website, "The David Suzuki Foundation collaborates with Canadians from all walks of life, including government and business, to conserve our environment and find solutions that will create a sustainable Canada through science-based research, education and policy work."

The Foundation’s mission is to "protect the diversity of nature and our quality of life, now and for the future." And its vision "is that within a generation, Canadians act on the understanding that we are all interconnected and interdependent with nature." 

Meet Catherine Gordon, Emily Fister, and Tiva Quinn

When we arrived at the Foundation's West Coast-inspired headquarters in Vancouver's down-to-earth Kitsilano neighbourhood, we were greeted by Catherine Gordon, CHRP and Director of Human Resources. She had already lined up two employees she thought we should speak with to get a sense of the Foundation's culture and how Rise has helped them from an employee perspective.

First, we met Emily Fister, Climate Change and Clean Energy Communications Specialist, who shared that her career with the Foundation was well aligned with her values. She explained that she loved her workplace's culture because "it's super collaborative and it's a space where you don't have to be afraid to be yourself." Tiva Quinn, Foundations Officer at David Suzuki Foundation echoed Emily's remarks, saying "I've found it really exceptionally friendly here..." She said that her colleagues are welcoming and inclusive to all new employees.

"The culture at the David Suzuki Foundation is very caring. It looks at the whole person...we have a four-day work week, so that allows staff to do things on the Friday that they have off, such as spend more time with their family and their children...they explore their artistic pursuits. Some people actually lecture at universities as well", says Catherine. Sounds like a dream for the Foundation's employees, but, as Catherine explains, all of this workplace flexibility presented challenges from an HR admin perspective. "As an HR person looking after 90 employees in three different offices, and remote, Rise has made my life so much better. With a four-day work week, time in lieu, vacation time, sick and dependent leave, I would probably get 50 emails a week. I would track everybody's absences through Excel spreadsheets." Now, Catherine says she no longer needs to fuss with spreadsheets. With Rise's time off tracking feature, Catherine's employees can log in to the Rise platform on their own and see how many vacation days, sick days, and so on that they have left, which she says has gotten rid of the problem of employees flooding her inbox with time off-related emails. This, in her words, "has made an amazing difference from an admin perspective".

The David Suzuki Foundation’s favourite things about Rise HRIS


Emily says, “Before (using Rise for time-off tracking), I would have to email my manager and follow more of a paper trail, but now, if I’m booking time off -- whether it’s for a vacation or out-of-town travel for work -- it’s really easy to keep track of what my team is doing and what I’m doing.”

Saves time

Because Rise’s time off tracking is integrated with payroll, Catherine doesn’t need to waste time navigating through endless employee emails and spreadsheets -- everything she needs is right in the Rise platform. All employee data -- including time-off information -- seamlessly transfers over to payroll and benefits, saving her countless hours.

Easy to use

“With Rise, everything is easy”, explains Tiva Quinn, Foundations Officer at the David Suzuki Foundation, “the homepage says 'you have this many sick days left, you have this many vacation days left...'” She explains that all the information she needs about her time off can be found right in Rise’s time off tracking screen.

Catherine and The David Suzuki Foundation enjoy using Rise for payroll and time off tracking so much that they have recently moved their group benefits over to Rise as well.

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