Canadian Benefits

Our goal is to help our clients engineer and implement the most effective programs possible for attracting, retaining, and rewarding their people from both a design and financing perspective. Watermark designs, implements, and manages benefits for organizations in over 50 countries and the world.

We have worked extensively with clients around the world in the assessment, formulation, and implementation of comprehensive human resource strategies. Jean Iozzo, our Principal brings 30 years of experience in the management of large, complex, and multi-disciplinary projects including director compensation, executive compensation, corporate governance, benefit strategies, international benefit plan management and pension strategies.

Previously Jean was a vice president at an independent consulting firm specializing in the design, and implementation of global total compensation and benefit strategies programs. Jean was manager of one of Canada's largest benefits providers where he was responsible for all aspects of benefit design, implementation of all; pension and benefits programs including some of the nations first flex programs.

We are active in many associations including: the Society for Trust and Estate Professionals, Human Resources Association, the Canadian Pension and Benefits Institute, Human Capital Institute, the Society For Human Resource Management, and the Institute Corporate Directors to name a few. Jean sits as a board director and trustee with various private and non-profit organizations.

We advise our Canadian clients on:

  • Executive and directors’ compensation
  • Stock option programs
  • Benefit strategies
  • Retirement compensation arrangements
  • … and more

Executive Compensation Consulting

Watermark Consulting offers a full complement of consulting services to assist companies in the design, implementation and support of Total Rewards programs that help attract, retain, motivate and reward executives, employees and Directors. We work with executives, compensation committees and boards on these matters. Watermark conducts custom salary surveys for organizations and Associations alike.

Watermark Group helps organizations by designing executive rewards programs that motivate business leaders to achieve outstanding business results.

The issue has never been more critical as companies strive to attract motivate and retain their top talent. We help our clients by creating executive rewards programs that are based on fair and objective measures.

Watermark conducts custom executive compensation review that can help your company determine the competitiveness of your executive total rewards program. These reviews are essential to recruit and retain qualified executives. Surveys can be conducted to detail information about total compensation including: competitive salary, short term, long-term incentive and perquisites. This analysis can be used as the basis for an annual compensation review or used as a tool to set total remuneration when hiring executives.

When it comes to Director compensation, changes in the regulatory environment including Canadian Securities Administrators disclosure practices and filing requirements and Sarbanes-Oxley Act provide a tremendous amount of increased director liability. These new disclosure requirements heighten the need for competent directors and their need to be much more involved with the oversight of company affairs.

Directors Compensation plays a critical role in the attraction, retention and the motivation of talented directors. We will help you design a plan so that highly qualified directors are attracted to your organization and assist with the demanding responsibilities that are required of them. We help companies and boards design and implement a wide range of director total reward programs including cash compensation and stock-based incentives. Watermark Human Capital can help your organization by designing a Directors rewards programs that motivate business leaders to achieve outstanding business results.

We assist our clients with the following:

  • Executive compensation review- annual and forensic reviews
  • Short and long-term incentive plan design, stock option and performance plans
  • Executive perquisites plan consulting, executive life, critical illness, and disability
  • Ad hoc plans- including retention and recruiting strategies
  • Total pay philosophy - assist in the set-up compensation philosophy and guiding principles
  • Executive succession planning

Director Total Rewards

  • Board compensation review
  • Committee compensation review
  • Board and committee chair compensation
  • Director equity programs
  • Equity ownership opportunities and requirements
  • Committee charters
  • Committee policies and procedures
  • Compliance assistance
  • Conduct periodical review of directors’ compensation programs

Savings and Retirement Plans

Are you Compliant with the new regulations?

In most jurisdictions, plan fiduciaries are considered investment experts. Without a sound due diligence and investment process, plan fiduciaries may be held liable for poor investment returns.

Watermark experts provide highly specialized pension and investment consulting services in the following areas:

  • Review existing or proposed plans to insure that programs meet desired goals and objectives.
  • Develop retirement strategies
  • Plan document maintenance and composition
  • Review and/or creation of investment policy statement
  • Assistance in maintaining your compliance
  • Act as trustees
  • Vendor selection
  • Member communication
  • Employee information sessions and workshops - local or onsite
  • Plan setup and government registration
  • Investment benchmarking
  • Investment manager search
  • Investment fund review including; pooled and segregated fund review
  • Wealth management - private client services

Employee Consulting Services

We provide our clients with superior benefit advice and brokerage services. Working together in a seamless way to understand your business, culture, and values, we assist in designing, communicating, and implementing benefits programs based on their business needs, both globally and locally. Watermarks Benefits Practice provides consulting service on a broad range of specialized services.

We provide consulting advice in the following areas:

Plan Design

  • Review of current plan design
  • Recommend best practices and plan benchmarking
  • Advise and recommend specific benefit strategies that meet your employee and corporate needs
  • Recommend options for all benefit programs
  • Review of contractual provisions
  • Review tax status of programs
  • Recommendations to efficient cost sharing arrangements
  • Merger and acquisition consulting

Benefit Plan Marketing

  • Preparation of RFP
  • Conduct Benefit Plan marketing
  • Analyze proposals
  • Vendor recommendation

Financial Review

  • Review financial agreements and costs
  • Evaluate financial performance including; cost, design and setup
  • Recommend alternate financial arrangements

Employee Communications & Plan Administration

  • Assist in plan implementation including:
  • Development of enrollment materials, including customized letters and forms
  • Design employee surveys and moderate focus groups
  • Design employee communication packages
  • Corporate, Government & Legislative Compliance
  • Provide consulting assistance with federal, provincial and regulatory compliance issues

Product Advice

  • Private medical insurance
  • Income protection (disability) insurance
  • Critical illness
  • Health and dental programs
  • Long term care
  • EFAP

Executive Benefits

How do you ensure that your total remuneration package remains competitive while satisfying your executives, board and shareholders that the appropriate benchmarking has taken place? How will your company react to the pending legislative changes especially as they impact on senior executives? Most plans that we have reviewed have one major flaw when providing for executive coverage. The plans are set up as a one plan fits all program. No thought has been made to ensure that the plans provide adequate coverage for high wage earners and executives.

We consult to companies and to executives and provide recommendation to proper plan design and setup in the following areas:

  • Executive Life Programs- key person, buy sell, split dollar programs
  • Executive Disability programs - Most group plans only protect an executives base salary, leaving a significant portion of an executive's total compensation uncovered. We will analyze your executive programs so that you and they are adequately covered. We can recommend program that offers; more flexibility, provides better definitions, has fewer limitations and covers them for their higher total compensation
  • Executive Critical Illness (CI) and Medical assistance
  • Executive Pension Plans- Because your retirement plan does not meet the needs of most executive we provide specialized plan design and consulting on SERP's, Individual Pension Plans (IPP's) and Retirement Compensation Arrangements (RCA's)
  • Executive Wealth Management- Investment counseling services
  • Access global medical care coverage that enables you to access care anywhere in the world:
    • No wait times
    • No triggering event needed to claim
    • No referral from a GP or Specialist
    • You can be diagnosed anywhere in the world
    • You can be treated anywhere in the world
    • You can choose: Your doctor, your treatment, your hospital or clinic

Corporate Governance

Today's corporate directors are more accountable to companies and shareholders and with the recent changes must have knowledge in a wide range of topics. Truly effective boards must be made up with individuals that have expertise and thorough knowledge in a wide range of topics including accounting, regulatory, and compensation matters. We will work with you to ensure that the best interests of the shareholders and corporation are considered. We can help boards with charter development and compensation matters as they relate to the new Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) disclosure practices and filing requirements. We work with boards and organizations in helping you to understand what the impact of these guidelines may have on your board and your company. We will help you to identify where compensation issues exist and where disclosure changes might be required. Corporation and Compensation Committees retain us to develop custom survey work including the development of their compensation practices and provide insight into recent trends and market activities.

Since not all boards have expertise in compensation we can assist with developing a total compensation structure for:

  • Executives
  • Officers
  • Board Members

Best Doctors®

Global Medical CareTM provides health care coverage that enables you to access medical care anywhere in the world with no wait times, no triggering event needed to claim and no referral from a GP or Specialist. You can be diagnosed anywhere in the world and you can be treated anywhere in the world and can choose your doctor your treatment and even, your hospital or clinic.

We can provide you with the Best Doctor® pertaining to your specific condition and give you access to the most advanced treatment and care, regardless of where in the world its located, ensuring you wait only days, rather than the weeks or months that you may often have to wait for tests and procedures such as MRI, CT or hip and knee surgery.

Expert medical reviews to ensure your diagnosis is correct and that you are pursuing the most promising treatment options and care at world-renowned centers of excellence, including Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Johns Hopkins, Cedars-Sinai, Cleveland Clinic and Mayo Clinic.

Available through Executive, Individual and Group policies, Best Doctors® Global Medical CareTM (GMC) offers a unique insurance plan that enables you to receive medical care from leading physicians worldwide. GMC is designed to complement provincial, critical illness and/or employee health plans, and Best Doctors® ensures that your health care needs and costs are covered – any place, any time.

GMC expands your health care options by providing you with access to medical experts around the world to ensure you get the right diagnosis and the right care, reducing the duration and expense of short- and long-term disability incidents by ensuring the right diagnosis and the best treatment.

Best Doctors® includes coverage for:

  • Semi-private room
  • Intensive care unit/life support
  • Cancer treatment (incl. biologic cancer drugs)
  • Inpatient and outpatient surgery
  • Physical therapy and rehabilitation
  • Emergency room
  • Durable medical equipment
  • Diagnostic services
  • Maternity benefit (inclusion of newborn)
  • Prescription/life sustaining drugs
  • Transplants
  • Air & ground ambulance
  • Dialysis
  • Repatriation
  • Optional travel benefit
  • Overall maximum limit – up to $5 million available, Deductible options starting at $2,500 for Cancer, surgery… option for $250.00 deductible for MRI and CT Scans
  • InterConsultation® service providing expert medical reviews whenever you need them
  • Benefits covering up to 100% of hospitalization, surgery, emergency room services, diagnostic services, cancer treatments, prescription drugs, medical equipment, and much more
  • Prescription drugs that have been approved in the US, UK and European Union.