Talent management

Empowering our people to thrive in the future of work

Sun Life has been certified as a Great Place to Work® in many of our markets around the world. We believe that’s a result of our efforts to build an inclusive culture, where our people feel motivated in their work and connected to their Sun Life experience.

Our approach

Sun Life's culture and values guide our thinking, behaviours and decisions, shaping our continued growth and transformation. We're committed to ensuring our culture continues to reflect our strengths and is enhanced in key areas to drive performance. We created a Culture Management Framework that ensures we systematically foster and reinforce our desired culture, declared values and key behaviours. These elements are aligned with our Purpose, vision, strategy and brand. Through ongoing communications, and by embedding culture into our programs and initiatives, we make it easy for our people to act in alignment with our culture and values. It’s a deliberate, ongoing effort to help our people understand “the way things get done” at Sun Life, and what they can expect – and ask – of others.

Our culture

At Sun Life, we care deeply about our Clients, our colleagues and society. We think and act with a long-term view and are committed to being there when our Clients need us the most, delivering market-leading solutions with excellence and unparalleled expertise.

​Our success is rooted in collaboration and a bolder mindset. Together, we inspire the possibility of a brighter future. Together, we help our Clients achieve lifetime financial security and live healthier lives.

Our values

  • Caring: We are emotionally invested in the success of others
  • Authentic: We create spaces where everyone can be themselves
  • Bold: We always do what's right and are prepared to take ownership of outcomes
  • Inspiring: We are passionate about what is possible and spread optimism
  • Impactful: We collectively go above and beyond to drive success and create value

Our people experience

At Sun Life, we bring our passion for helping others to work every day. We come together to drive meaningful impact for our Clients and build an environment where every member of our team can find opportunity in a purposeful career they love. That means we all contribute to success, and we learn every day. This mindset is foundational to the way we attract great talent, grow careers and inspire our global teams to shape our organizational future.  

Our reputation as a great place to work is based on genuine feedback and heartfelt advocacy from our people around the world. People matter at Sun Life, and we demonstrate our commitment every day in the way we work and take care of each other, our communities and our Clients. 

Sun Life’s focus on the future of work is about reimagining how we work, where we work and the evolving role of the workforce in delivering outcomes, so that we adapt to the changing circumstances of work. Our future of work strategy has several elements:

  • Modern, people-focused workspaces: Over the past few years, we’ve renovated or built Sun Life workspaces that encourage new and diverse ways of working. These open, bright and activity-based spaces ensure that moments of togetherness, connection and collaboration can happen with ease. 
  • Tools and resources to thrive: We're investing in the resources, tools and technology people are looking for to optimize productivity, creativity and collaboration in a hybrid environment. This includes collaboration experience rooms, and a more collaborative communication tool which integrates many of the digital tools our people use every day. 
  • Hybrid work, flexible working: Our future of work journey is centred on hybrid - building more flexibility for our people and business as we serve Clients. We offer flextime work arrangements that enable employees to select their workday start and finish times. We also support opportunities to work short-term from another country. Under the policy, eligible employees can request to work outside of their home country for up to 20 workdays within a calendar year, depending on the destination country.  
  • Anytime, anywhere skill development: To foster flexibility and autonomy in shaping their learning process, we provide hybrid training and flexible learning approaches to support our employees learning from any location. 

We offer in-house and online training and leadership development facilitated by internal and external experts for all employees and leaders. For example:  

  • Our e-learning portal, also accessible by mobile, contains more than 15,000 courses, tools and resources on everything from allyship to Zoom tips and tricks
  • We offer job rotation, tuition help and experiential opportunities outside of an employee’s day-to-day role. For example, our gig marketplace gives employees the chance to work with teams across Sun Life on short-term projects, regardless of their location or employee level. This provides them with an opportunity to gain new skills and experience – putting employees in the driver’s seat of their own career.
  • All employees must complete yearly training on a range of topics. This training is not about ticking a box. It’s focused on developing the knowledge, skills and behaviours to be risk-ready and help us protect our Clients, our brand and, most importantly, each other.
  • For the most effective learning, employees can create a custom learning path based on their particular needs
  • Virtual classrooms, simulation/gamification and social learning are among the technologies we offer to support diverse ways of learning


To ensure the future of our business, there is a pressing need to find and nurture next-gen employees and leaders. We have adopted many programs to help us build a strong talent pipeline. Examples include:

  • Practical learning opportunities for people still in school (co-op and work-study arrangements)
  • A Rotational Leadership Development Program that lets new grads explore different roles at Sun Life
  • An experience leadership program, which fast tracks the development of top-talent directors into more senior roles
  • The Sun Life Leadership Education and Development program, which helps new people leaders in North America and Asia build core management skills and capabilities
  • The Sun Life Executive Development Program, an immersive learning experience for senior leaders  
  • A leadership program for Sun Life employees in Bermuda, Canada and the U.S. that identify as Asian, Black or Hispanic-Latino 
  • The Sun Life Leadership Academy for all AVP and above leaders, which supports cultural change through common learning experiences and embedding of new behaviours 
  • The Dean Connor Sun Life Inclusion Scholarships for Black and Indigenous Students in Canada, which provides them with monetary support, a summer internship with Sun Life, a Sun Life mentor and a chance to be offered a full-time role with Sun Life after graduation
  • Yearly talent reviews that help us identify and develop future senior leaders across Sun Life

We encourage open, two-way dialogue with our people and seek their input through various channels. These channels include:

  • A 360-degree feedback program
  • Annual performance reviews, as well as ongoing leader and employee check-ins
  • Quarterly engagement surveys and just-in-time pulse surveys 
  • Career planning sessions
  • Internal and external social media platforms

2023 highlights

  • $48 million invested in training and development to support employee growth (up from $34 million in 2022)1.
  • Achieved an 88% employee engagement score2, exceeding the global financial services norm3.
  • Employees engaged in 21 hours of training on average4.

Learn more about our progress and performance in our 2023 Sustainability Report and ESG Performance Tables.

Bringing inclusive employment opportunities to local job seekers

Sun Life offers meaningful training and employment opportunities to foster long-term social impact in Toronto.

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Certified as a Great Place to Work at Sun Life Canada, Sun Life U.S., Sun Life Global Solutions (SLGS) India and Philippines, Sun Life Philippines, Sun Life Ireland, Sun Life Indonesia, Sun Life Malaysia and Sun Life Vietnam. Great Place to Work Certification is an accreditation that shows an organization is an employer of choice.

Sun Life Canada has also been recognized in 2023 by Great Place to Work as one of the: Best Workplaces in Financial Services & Insurance, Best Workplaces with Most Trusted Executive Teams, Best Workplaces in Ontario, and Best Workplaces for Mental Wellness.

Sun Life Ireland was recognized as one of Ireland's Best Workplaces in 2023 as well as one of the Best Workplaces in Tech.

2024 Top Place to Work – USA (sponsored by USA Today) – fourth time in a row

Sun Life U.S. was in the top ten of the Boston Globe's 2023 Top Places to Work in the largest company category, marking the sixth consecutive year receiving a Top Places to Work recognition from the Boston Globe.

More resources

Refer to Sustainability Data Scope - Note 3.

71% of employees surveyed participated. Refer to Sustainability Data Scope – Note 4.

Based on Willis Towers Watson’s Benchmark of Global Financial Services.

Refer to Sustainability Data Scope - Note 8.

Refer to Sustainability Data Scope.