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By Darryl Stewart

Becoming the best place to work in Canada: Growing the Herd, p.4

By Darryl Stewart, Head of the Herd

This is the final post in our “How to grow your herd” series.

Summary of the first three posts:

  1. In part 1 why I wore only my underwear to work, I talked about why we wanted to grow IBEX
  2. In  how to grow your herd part 2 I talked about how we found our hedgehog concept (our focus) and what it is
  3. In how to grow your herd part 3 I talked about how we confronted the brutal realities that were holding us back

In this final post, I want to give you some insight on how we want to represent ourselves to the world and how we plan to grow our company. How to grow your herd part 4 is all about spreading the herd word.

We have unique names for just about everything at IBEX. To give you a feel for this, at IBEX, marketing is called spreading the herd word, the payroll marketing team is called the Goatbuzzsters and we call our accounting department the Feed Counters.

IBEX has always been a unique place, but in the past we have kept this hidden from plain view.  The thinking was that we must appear solid, secure, and serious (some might say boring and stuffy), like the companies we compete with, in order to be perceived as trustworthy. Payroll, after all, is a serious business. It must be done on time, government remittances must be paid properly, and system data needs to be safe and secure. In the beginning, we asked ourselves, who would trust a bunch of payroll specialists who have fun at work?

As it turns out, lots of people would.

When we began our growth strategy, we looked at who our customers are.  Very few people signed up with IBEX without knowing us.  Most of our customers were referrals from other customers, companies that have people we know working there, or people that have learned about us through our community work or one of the many stories that have been done about our unique work culture.  It became apparent that the true IBEX was not something to hide, but something to tell the world about.  We concluded that we should start letting more people know the real IBEX by finding unique and interesting ways to spread our one-of-a-kind message.

Another thing that was bugging us was that nobody in the Canadian payroll world had caught up to the expectations of web based services.  People now demand open and transparent pricing, free trials, and even free versions of web based software.  We believe this is the way people want to go about choosing a web based anything for themselves or their business. Our goal was to make this a reality for Canadian online payroll – and we did just that with IBEX!

Our marketing plan is simple.

We will make it known that we are striving towards making IBEX one of the best places to work in Canada. By letting the inner workings of IBEX become transparent for all to see, we can show the world what we are doing to reach our goals by sharing both our successes and failures along the way.

We believe in being open and honest about what we do and how we do it.  By putting all our pricing right on our website and offering free trials and free versions of our system, people can experience us instantly, easily, and without the suffering of waiting for a salesperson to call.

Above all, the value of having fun at IBEX while working hard to meet system and customer expectations is what makes this company so unique compared to other payroll providers. We believe a high quality service comes from a hard working team who enjoys what they do. By maintaining an incredible work enviornment that emphasizes the element of ‘fun’ and ‘teamwork’, we believe that IBEX is on the right path to becoming one of the best places to work in Canada, as well as the top Canadian payroll provider.

We’re not afraid to set the bar high here because, well, goats can scale anything.

IBEX Payroll extends our profound respect and immeasurable gratitude to all the ancestors and keepers of the land on whose traditional territories our work takes place. We acknowledge that we are on Treaty 1 territory, the traditional gathering place of the Anishinaabe, Cree, Oji-Cree, Dakota and Dene people and the traditional homeland of the Métis people. This land is sacred, historical, and significant. 

Every time we acknowledge this truth, we have an invitation and an opportunity to reflect on the wrongs of the past, what we do in the present, and what we can do to continually honour the people whose lands and water we benefit from today. 

This statement only acts as a first step in honouring the land we reside on and its peoples, and must be paired with education, understanding and informed action.