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Executive Director, Total Rewards 

Ryerson University

Toronto, ON

About Ryerson

At the intersection of mind and action, Ryerson is on a transformative path to becoming Canada’s leading comprehensive innovation university. Integral to this path is the placement of equity, diversity and inclusion as fundamental to our institutional culture. Our current academic plan outlines each as core values and we work to embed them in all that we do.

Ryerson University welcomes those who have demonstrated a commitment to upholding the values of equity, diversity, and inclusion and will assist us to expand our capacity for diversity in the broadest sense. In addition, to correct the conditions of disadvantage in employment in Canada, we encourage applications from members of groups that have been historically disadvantaged and marginalized, including First Nations, Metis and Inuit peoples, Indigenous peoples of North America, racialized persons, persons with disabilities, and those who identify as women and/or 2SLGBTQ+. Please note that all qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, applications from Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

To learn more about our work environment and innovative educational environment, visit, check out @RyersonU, @RyersonHR, and @RyersonECI on Twitter, and visit our LinkedIn page.

The opportunity

In line with Ryerson's growth as a university, Human Resources is on a path to modernize and enhance its services. A key priority is the development of a robust Total Rewards strategy that will prepare the University for the future and attract and retain top performing talent.

To support this broad initiative, HR is currently seeking an executive director of total rewards. The ideal candidate is a passionate leader who embraces change and has experience implementing a competitive total reward program for a dynamic and complex university.

What you will do

The executive director of total rewards will develop and execute a competitive total rewards program grounded in equity, diversity and inclusion which encompasses base and variable pay programs, executive compensation, job evaluation, pay equity, benefits and pension administration and the efficient delivery of the associated administrative processes.

While providing leadership to the Total Rewards team, the executive director will be responsible for:

  • Building a Total Rewards Centre of Excellence aligned with the high impact HR operating model, including streamlined processes to ensure high level of client satisfaction, that support the provision of an efficient and transparent compensation program.
  • Defining the total rewards strategy to support the growing needs of the university and in conjunction with broad HR objectives.
  • Developing and implementing a compensation strategy, policies and programs to comprehensively reward and compensate a diverse employee base.
  • Responsible for the comprehensive review and development of a benefits strategy as part of a broader talent rewards strategy, including the analysis of the benefit plans for cost control and risk assessment factors.
  • Development and maintenance of strong relationships with internal and external partners.
  • Responsible for guiding senior executive decisions regarding the compensation policies and practices.

About our team

Ryerson's Human Resources department is made up of human resources experts and innovators who contribute to the achievement of Ryerson University's strategic priorities. We partner with our clients to create and deliver outstanding practical and strategic human resource solutions, programs and services that enhance workplace culture, engagement and inclusion. You can find out more about our People First philosophy and values by reading about who we are and what we do.

The executive director will create a Centre of Excellence by bringing together Total Compensation (TC) and Pension and Benefits (P&B) as one unit. The TC team is composed of compensation and job evaluation specialists, providing job evaluation services, and managing the University’s compensation programs for all employee groups. The P&B team supports both employees and retirees for group benefits and pension plans. We provide service to approximately 4300 employees with group benefit coverage and 4700 pension plan members.

To help us learn more about you, please provide a cover letter and resume describing how you meet the following required qualifications:


  • Completion of a post-secondary degree in Business with a Human Resources specialization or a related field.
  • Minimum ten (10) years’ relevant work experience, including six (6) years progressive HR leadership experience at a senior level, and 3-5 years of experience working in a total rewards focused role.
  • Direct experience within a total rewards portfolio is required, in areas including, but not limited to annual merit budgeting, competitive pay analysis, job evaluation, pay equity legislation, pay structure, benefit and pension administration, recognition and communication of total rewards.
  • Demonstrated experience leading large total rewards projects with measurable results, preferably in large and complex multi-union environments.

Skill and knowledge

  • Deep compensation, benefits and business acumen, with working knowledge of related policies, laws, and regulations
  • Experience with administering a defined benefit pension plan
  • Innovative thinker, with ability to see ahead, anticipate future challenges, and translate potential solutions into practice
  • Advanced analytical skills, with the ability to produce thoughtful leadership content based on relevant research
  • Advanced consulting skills, with the ability to work across the organization to influence decisions for a positive outcome
  • Expertise in the design, development, implementation, and administration of a wide range of compensation and benefits programs
  • Excellent problem-solving, critical thinking, deductive reasoning, inductive reasoning, and analytical skills
  • Excellent leadership, communication, interpersonal, and management skills.

To submit an application, please visit the Ryerson University career site and follow the prompts. Applications will be accepted until December 4, 2021.

If you would like more information about this opportunity, please contact Nora McAllister, manager, talent acquisition and staff recruitment at Ryerson University at


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