At Scotiabank, we know that Veterans make our Bank stronger. We are proud to be a Military Friendly Employer and recognize and appreciate the contributions of veterans and reservists – during their term of service and beyond. Their willingness to sacrifice and serve others inspires us – as service is a fundamental part of how we are building a better bank. 

In honour of the month of Remembrance in Canada and Military Family Month in the United States, I had the opportunity to speak with several members of the Veterans Network to find out more about how they are creating a community that supports current and former military personnel within Scotiabank! 

Julie: What is the mission of these Veteran Employee Resource Groups at Scotiabank? 

Our mission is to create a community that provides a forum for networking, training, and to advance this diverse group of employees where we can. We value the diverse knowledge, experiences, and talent that veterans and reservists offer our team and are extremely proud of the experience and resources we have in order to support them. 

“The Scotiabank Veternas Network helps the community by ensuring not only the needs of veteran employees are met but enable us to learn and develop with our fellow veterans outside of our immediate roles in our respective areas.” – Jeff Johnston, Senior Manager Operations.

Julie: What are some of the key initiatives the SVN and ScotiaVets are contributing to in order to advance the inclusion of Veterans at Scotiabank?

We continuously seek to provide veterans and reservists with opportunities for success, create awareness and employee engagement for them, and partner with organizations that advance their inclusion. 

  • Actively seek to recruit and develop candidates: In Canada, we have established a partnership with Veterans Affairs who run recruitment events aimed at helping military veterans find employment. 
  • Host events: Each year, we host a Remembrance Day ceremony for employees. The ceremony will be held virtually this year. We will be highlighting how we as Scotiabankers, are in this together and talk about what lies beyond 2020, the pandemic, and how we can leverage resiliency and ingenuity to create a better tomorrow. We also host Fireside Conversations with senior leaders at the bank who are Veterans and military leaders. Highlights include ScotiaVets hosting General Arnold Bunch, Jr. of the US Air Force in our offices in New York     
  • Seek and develop partnerships that support and give back to Veterans and their families: In 2018, we helped establish a scholarship program with Canadian Forces Morale and Welfare services allowing us to support the military families that constantly have to manage the challenges of relocation, maintain a balanced lifestyle, protecting well-being within the home and ease of impact of deployment. Scotiabank has helped remove those barriers and have an immediate and important impact on the lives of seven students of military families, giving them the freedom to focus on their studies and relieving the stress of financial pressures. 
  • Enabling Continued Service: This year, we worked with Human Resources to update our Reserve Leave Policy so Scotiabankers called to duty to the Canadian Covid-19 response could respond to the call.   

“I am incredibly proud of all the hard work put in by members and supporters of the SVN. We have created a platform for veterans and reservists to have a voice within the bank, and have increased recruitment, retention, and visibility for an often-invisible group of employees.” - Anthony Alliot, Senior Consultant, Talent Acquisition

Julie: Why is the inclusion of veterans and reservists at Scotiabank important to you as members of the ERG?

As Canadians, our culture draws from incredibly diverse backgrounds, and this strength is represented today in the tapestry of our great nation. Similarly, at Scotiabank, we are able to naturally showcase the diversity that truly makes us stronger and more capable, not only as a Bank but also as a community. 

Scotiabank values us and other veterans and reservists and understands our unique needs which in turn enables us as veterans to continue to serve our country and demonstrate the Bank's commitment to the welfare of the nation.

“For me, it is important that we never forget these events and sacrifices that have taken place through the men and women who served. Scotiabank understands that the Veterans who are now in the workplace at Scotia, have unique performance and technical competencies which ultimately supports their culture and performance.” -  Paul Bertrand, Benefits Administration Manager

Julie: Lastly, is there anything that you are extremely proud of from this group?

The last few months have been especially challenging for our own military members, as soldiers from the Canadian Reserve and Regular Force as they were called upon to serve in a variety of ways including supporting our elderly in long-term care homes and assuring the delivery of essential supplies in our communities. 

There are many Scotiabankers who are also serving Reservists who were called upon and left their families and day-jobs at the Bank to fill their duties as citizen-soldiers. The Bank enabled their participation in Operation Laser by providing extended additional time off to do so. This initiative showcased the strong ties to Scotiabank’s military heritage. Over 100 years ago,  more than 600 Scotiabankers left en-masse to support war efforts in World War I with 94 making the ultimate sacrifice. Among those who served was C. Sydney Frost who would later become the bank’s President and CEO. Their legacy lives-on in Scotiabankers who today continue to serve. We are proud to work for an employer that helps continue the tradition of service and look forward to continuing to support our Reservists and Veterans.

Thank you to Jeff Johnston, Anthony Alliot, Bob Berube, Paul Bertrand, David Sutcliffe of the Scotiabank Veterans Network, and Zach Malamud of ScotiaVets and all Veterans and Reservists at Scotiabank for your time, support, and on-going contributions. Thank you for your service. 

Scotiabank is proud to be a Military Friendly Employer. If you’re a reservist or a veteran interested in pursuing a career with Scotiabank, please view our current opportunities.