Employee Benchmark Survey results

Thank you to everyone who participated in our 2021 Employee Benchmark Survey. Further analysis and data tables are available in the PowerPoint or the memo to the Mayor and Council (401 KB). You can also read the Vancouver Public Library results here (342 KB). If you have questions, please reach out via email.

Who we heard from

  • 3,732 staff participated in the survey, which equates to a response rate of 55%
  • The full response rates for each department are on Citywire/Vancouver.ca
  • 58% completed the survey by email, and for those who received a postcard, 18% completed the survey
  • Staff who were most likely to complete the survey are: 
    • Between 41 to 60 years of age 
    • Employed with the City between four to 20 years 
    • Female 
    • Permanent full-time
    • Exempt employees
    • Managers, administrative or senior clerical employees

Who makes up our staff according to the demographic results of the survey?

  • 2% of those who responded are Indigenous
  • 56% describe themselves as white, 37% as racialized, and 7% as bi-racial or multi-racial
  • 55% identify as men, while 44% identify as women and 1% identify as non-binary or gender fluid, and 1% report having trans experience
  • 8% identify as LGBTQ/2S+
  • 40% observe a religion, and 13% observe a religion other than Christianity
  • 45% are caregivers
  • 9% identify as persons with a disability
  • 64% of staff are born in Canada, and 4% have been in Canada for under 5 years

Employee experience

With an average score of 70, we have a good score compared to the results from similar other public sector organizations. 
Overall, it also points to a positive perception of the workplace.

We scored over 75 on the following: 

  • When it comes to being proud to work for the City, 
  • The flexibility of work arrangements, 
  • Managers have fair and reasonable expectations of staff, and
  • Diversity is fully appreciated in the workplace. 

Survey results confirm that, further work are needed when it comes to 

  • Preventing bullying and harassment and 
  • Helping staff thrive in their career.

The overall employee experience scores

Survey questions Disagree Neutral Agree

Average score

/100 points

My physical workspace is accessible and meets my needs. 8% 13% 79% 79
My manager has fair and reasonable expectations of me. 10% 12% 78% 78
I am proud to work for the City of Vancouver. 9% 17% 74% 76
My work arrangement is flexible and supports my needs. 11% 14% 75% 75
Diversity in language, ability, accent, dress, lifestyle and physical appearance is fully appreciated in my workplace. 11% 17% 72% 74
If something inappropriate or uncomfortable happens in my workplace, I feel safe openly discussing it with my manager. 18% 13% 70% 72
I am confident that I can access support that is culturally appropriate for me through the City when I need it (e.g., counselling, mentorship). 13% 19% 68% 71
I feel that senior leadership in my department is serious about creating a fair and inclusive workplace. 18% 16% 67% 70
My work unit is free from discrimination, bullying and harassment. 22% 17% 62% 67
I am confident that appropriate action will take place, when I report an incident of discrimination or harassment. 23% 19% 58% 63
The City creates opportunities for me to thrive in my career. 22% 26% 52% 60
  • Respondents were asked to specify their level of agreement to a statement along a Likert scale with five points: (1) Strongly disagree; (2) Disagree; (3) Neither agree nor disagree; (4) Agree; (5) Strongly agree. This Likert methodology will allow us to uncover degrees of opinion that made it possible to uncover more information about our employee experience.

How do we compare?

  • When we compared the survey data to available labour force rates across the province and Metro Vancouver area, the City is underrepresented in almost all equity groups: women, caregivers, Indigenous staff, LGBTQ/2S, racialized staff and persons with disabilities.
  • In Phase Two, we will have further intersectional analysis to share with staff.

What we're doing about it

  • We are using this data along with a suite of new tools and policies to create meaningful changes for staff.
  • Several practical actions have already begun or are planned for 2022 to address some of the issues outlined in the data. This includes the new Respectful Workplace and Harassment and Discrimination Policy and revised process, changes to succession planning, analysis of how we better engage with operational and front-line staff, emerging Elder in Residence program, and new mental health support for racialized staff.
  • The survey results form the basis for the City's Equity Maturity Assessment currently underway. Contact the Equity Office to get involved
  • Read the full list of actions in the memo to Council.