Ottawa Humane Society Employee Review

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Absolutely terrible management but the animals are nice
Client Service Representative (Current Employee) –  Ottawa, ON1 November 2018
Everybody thinks that working at the Humane Society is basically just receiving puppy/kitten kisses and cuddles. Though we do get to do that (pretty often I must say) there are lots, tons actually, of other aspects to working here. I’m going to breakdown me review into different topics. It’s going to be: Managers/supervisors, staffing, pay, and the overall environment. I’m going to apologize in advance because this is going to be pretty lengthy. Let’s Begin!

The OHS can be a hectic place that is probably busier on certain days than a New York deli. There has been days where the line-ups are equivalent to a ride at Disney. Unfortunately this is due to the OHS creating management positions that really aren’t necessary and taking away the budget for staffing the employees that actually help the animals. If you don’t mind being overwhelmed some days then this is a good place for you! Hey on the positive note, you’ll always have something to do!

Another thing to add to this is if you’re looking for a full-time job, seriously go look somewhere else. Full-time is so rare and hard to get. You’ll most likely be getting 2 or 3 shifts a week.

To me, the biggest Con of working here is the management. While some Managers are nice and greet you with a friendly (most times fake, while trying to remember what my name is) hello, other are just simply cold. They offer no support to their staff and will just be condescending from day one. My particular manager would rarely come out to help the team if we were overwhelmed and would just stay in their office
  more... until the end of the work day. Most times, if they did come out, it was to tell us to clean up all while we are juggling 10 clients.

The managers really act like they are much better than you which really makes working at the OHS a not so great experience. Also not to mention that their pay is SIGNIFICANTLY higher than regular staff and supervisors. The managers do not have the animals on their minds unfortunately…it’s about the paycheque.

Another thing that really upset myself and many other employees is when we were all asked to fill out a survey about how we feel about the work we do. During our all staff meeting the Executive Director blamed all the negative feedback from that survey on part-time employees being upset that they aren’t full-time. The issues were not addressed and therefor never resolved. The Executive Director was rarely seen outside of the management area. The only time you would see him walking around the shelter side of the OHS is when he was giving a tour to a person who donated a large sum of money. He also used his power to let his friends and people who’ve donated more than $10,000 skip the whole adoption process and just chose whatever animal they like (including puppies and kittens) while everyone else has to go through a very lengthy adoption process.

One more thing…a lot of the animals that are chosen to go through great lengths to save (ie. Sadie Mae) are chosen by the managers by ones that will give us the most donations and publicity. A lot of animals come into the OHS really injured, but if they don’t have a good story then they are unfortunately humanely euthanized.

In all honesty, the managers alone are enough to make me say that working here isn’t all it’s made out to be.

Honestly, the OHS pays their staff pretty well. I personally have zero complaints of the salary here (which is above minimum) but I do know of some veterinary technicians and assistants that weren’t very happy of their salary. I can’t really comment on these though because I am not familiar with the salary scale for those types of jobs. What I can say is that for the position I had, they pay was better than most places. Just don’t go asking for overtime….you’ll be shot down in a second.

Overall environment:
The overall environment is great. The staff (all non-management staff, including supervisors) are really great people. Like most work places there is a bit of drama and gossip but it really isn’t all that bad. It can be an emotional job also. You have to be prepared to see all sorts of things and not let your emotions take over. It can be tough at times but it is also very rewarding.

To sum this all up. The OHS is a nice place to work but it does have some issues that need to be resolved. The managers need to start treating their employees with a bit more respect and also need to start thinking about the animals over themselves. Start looking thinking of reducing the amount of Manager Positions we have and hire more employees who actually help the animals. If you really love animals and are ok with being a part-time employee who gets stepped on by managers then you really may love working here. But as for me, I am going to give it a 2 star rating.
The animals, the pay isn`t bad, coworkers are great
The managers, no room for growth, stressful
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Your job is what you make of it!
Animal care (Current Employee) –  Ottawa, ON15 April 2019
I’ve been working there for a decade. I love it. Staff is great, including management. I’ve never had a problem going to my boss for help and for any issues. I think people that complain about management are the ones who are too intimidated to actually speak to them. We are all people and we have the same goal at OHS.
Whether you want to work there as a career or “just a job”, you get what you put in. The hard workers who are humble and compassionate really show.
Great place.
Flexible shifts, cross training intedepartments, friendly and caring staff
Can be long hours, seasonally stressful/ high volume of animals
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Horrible managers! Very Toxic Work environment
Customer Service Representative (Former Employee) –  Ottawa, ON1 April 2019
Working with the animals is fantastic and very rewarding. Also my coworkers were amazing! The only issue with working here is the management. They are very rude to their employees and will belittle you any chance they get. This results in a very stressful and toxic work environment. Whenever an issue is brought to their attention, it is played down and pushed under the rug. They will do a staff survey to see where they can improve, but when they get negative results they blame it on part-time staff who are jealous of full-time workers. I would strongly advise people against working here if you are looking for a fun and stress free job.
The animals, coworkers
The managers, no room to move up in the organization, stress
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