Today we are proud to open our doors in sharing our 2022 Impact Report with you, as part of an annual commitment moving forward. 

Part of our B Corp promise is to be transparent in our actions to our team, our clients, our community, and the world. Whether it be the economic impact, our environmental footprint, our commitment to DEI and justice, our operations, how we take care of the people within our orbit, how we support and build up our community, or even our ethical principles to maintain a healthy, inclusive, accessible and open web — we have attempted to cover the most important and reflective topics throughout this report.

Our year at Plank actually follows an August to July-calendar. We’ve taken the fall to put together what we believe is a good template for us to share, evaluate, and repeat next year. 

As a B Corp, and as a purpose-driven company, we’re committed to continuous improvement and sustainable change — meaning that every year this report may look a little different as we discuss new initiatives, practices, policies, or processes to reflect those changes.

Here is a snippet of our 2022 Impact Report:

“We live in a world rapidly changing due to the climate crisis, unrest, and war affecting many of us and our families; equality for all is still a daily battle; and social and economic ramifications of the pandemic continue to echo in every part of our lives.

We faced rapidly shifting work norms, including a new status quo for remote work within our industry. We saw the great resignation as employees around the world questioned their jobs, how much money they were paid, and how and where they want to live their lives.

We watched the tide of financial concern, ever ebbing and flowing, drawback as a wave of recession loomed over the world’s economy. Our individual, group and personal investments took a hit. Inflation and cost of living expenses touched us all, as everything around us got more expensive. Money issues were around every corner.

Within this context, we began to create new foundations for the company to work from. We created more structure, hired to ensure our team would always be a top priority, codified and doubled our investments into professional learning and expertise, empowered the team to define our process and improve the value and scope of the work we do, we invested more into a distributed workforce, and we took the time to listen.

As we made many of these internal facing improvements, it became apparent that these changes went beyond the borders of our company. We began work on B Corp certification, and the stars aligned. B Corp gave us clarity into how we could anchor our new foundation to a bedrock of social and environmental concern that has been at the core of Plank since day one.”

The B Corp community and the powerful network we’ve built over 24 years are vast and full of inspiration. We have a lot to learn and a lot of goals for improvement in the coming years. This Annual Impact Report is, by no means, a statement of all of the good work we’re doing, but rather a transparent look into the different areas of the business — the good and the bad. We are human after all. 

After you’ve taken a look, we would love to hear your feedback on what we could be doing better. Email us at

On this 22nd International Women’s Day, we are honouring the contribution women have made to everything we are at Plank. 

In the past year, we have promoted women in tech leadership, skills for women in tech, as well as mentorship and job skills advice. We are working with NPower Canada, a number of local code bootcamps, as well as DestaByn, with a focus on assisting, hiring and promoting women in the web development industry. Plank continues to strive towards equality, representation, education, and partnership to further this cause.

Our Diversity & Inclusion Program was led by Kayla Keizer, a senior project manager at Plank. Her leadership allowed us to develop a program that empowers Black youth in our community. We have currently held two successful mentorship programs to guide mentees in their tech careers.

This year’s global theme is « gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow » 

« The theme for this year’s International  Women’s Day is “gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow”, underscoring the fact that women bear a disproportionate burden of the impacts of the climate crisis, and that they need to be central to the solutions for a sustainable planet. »

In keeping with the theme, this year Plank applied for B-Corp certification. The effort was led by Paisley Nyberg from our team. The process asked us a lot of tough questions, and Paisley led the charge to help us face these issues and come up with proof of our current policies, as well as engage us in creating real solutions where we fell short. We’re proud to say that we now have a roadmap for our future, and women in tech play a role in every part.

The advancement of gender equality is a core Sustainable Development Goal at the heart of our company. 

We are taking this opportunity to share our appreciation for the Women of Plank, so we asked our team for some input on what makes each member special and an important part of our team.

Women of Plank:

  • Steph — The driving force behind everything to do with marketing, and has over the past two years set the tone and direction for all communications
  • Annika — An empathetic and people focused senior project manager who cares about the team, our work and our partners deeply
  • Christina — Is appreciated for her ongoing support to the team, always jumping in to help wherever & whenever a problem needs to be solved
  • Kayla — Is a steadfast project manager who is a cultural leader at Plank defining clear team goals and driving forward our diversity & inclusion mentorship program
  • Jenn — 16+ years of commitment to Plank & her impeccable leadership of the design team 
  • Megan — An Incredible frontend development leader who is always empowering her team through personal & professional development
  • Maëlle — The newest addition to our design team has shown a dedication to her work and is constantly challenging us with new tools and fresh approaches to our work
  • Paisley — Has had a major impact on our clients and projects, by working hard to define the scope of our projects and communicating clearly why someone should work with us
  • Véro — Has grown into a strong and determined voice for design and accessibility, always finding the balance between design innovation and ethical development principles
  • Lisa — Keep the financial health of our company on track, on a daily basis by driving the company goals forward and always keeping them in line

Whether your team is working from home or going to the office, it’s important to take stock of the products you supply them, and how these products impact the environment. After all, the services and supplies you use to sustain your business add up, and contribute, to your ecological footprint.

At Plank, we attempt to purchase from and work with suppliers who demonstrate a commitment to sustainability, offer long-lasting quality goods, help reduce product waste and support positive social action.

Here are some of the sustainable suppliers we suggest looking into:

Sustainable Tech Brands


Apple is a carbon-neutral company with all their corporate operations running on 100% renewable energy. They are continuously reducing their environmental impact while keeping their suppliers responsible and accountable. They also have open and clear values, a deep commitment to accessibility and deep ties to privacy as a human right. 

Apple is our largest supplier of the tools we use to support our team. These include laptops, phones and tablets, input devices, earphones, speakers, and media accessories. Having long-lasting and dependable technology means that we can reduce the number of tech purchases and upgrades.

Logitech – Computer Accessories

Logitech specializes in innovative computer accessories and they are committed to becoming climate positive by 2030. In 2020, they became the first consumer electronics company to provide carbon labelling for their products. Over a quarter of their new products are developed using Design for Sustainability  Principles. And they were rated the most sustainable company in 2020 by World Finance Awards. 

“As a company, we believe positive change is necessary. Change for the environment. Change for inclusion. And an equal playing field for all. The world needs companies to stand up for environmental sustainability and diversity.”

Bracken P. Darrell, Logitech President and CEO

Our cameras and Zoom-specific hardware come from Logitech. We also purchase some of our input devices through Logitech. Logitech hardware has been rock solid for us — with no returns/defects, or major issues, in the past 5 years.

Belkin – Tech Accessories

Belkin is a leader in tech accessories including hubs, input devices, and cables. In 2020, they received the Sustainability Leadership Award by aligning themselves with the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals and pledging support to the Paris Agreement

We purchase our hubs and input devices from Belkin and are satisfied with their longevity and lower return/defect rate.

LG – Digital Screens

LG has stated it is on the path to achieving carbon neutrality by 2030 as well as completing a transition to 100% renewable energy by 2050.

Plank prefers to purchase LG screens whenever possible, for our Montréal office, and to support our employees in their work-from-home setups. LG 4k USB-C compatible screens seem to last longer and have a lower return/defect rate.   

A Sustainable Office Space

Fully – Office Furniture

Fully is our preferred supplier of seated and standing desks, ergonomic aids, and screen suspension. They are a certified BCorp company which gives us the reassurance that they are committed to following sustainable business practices and building a healthy supply chain.

All the Fully products have supported our downtown office space as well as work from home setups.

Sustainable General Contractor

When it comes to doing work around your facility and hiring a licensed contractor, choose one that supports your sustainability goals. They can help you choose more sustainable lighting options, using non-toxic materials and resource conservation whenever possible.

When we have work to do around the facility we depend on long-standing professional licensed contractor, Downs McGovern. Working in Québec and Ontario, he listens to our requirements and goals and is able to present sustainable and environmentally friendly options. 

The installation of new LED lighting throughout our office is a recent example of this relationship. Downs McGovern helped source, analyse and install new hanging lights which brighten our workspace considerably, improve on eye strain, save energy, and have a very long life span to prevent waste. 

Eco-friendly Office Cleaning

Choose a cleaning service or cleaning products that are environmentally friendly and safe for the planet. There are a variety of different products that are safer for the environment, however, our preferred choice of cleaning products is from Attitude Living. 
While being safe for the environment, Attitude Living also provides eco-refills that use up to 80% less plastic compared to purchasing single-use products. They also support two non-profit tree planting organisations, Eden Reforestation and One Tree Planted, to plant a tree for every online purchase.

Reduce Paper and Paper Products

Plank has made great strides in the past few years to move to an almost completely paperless process.

Challenges to Consider

There are a lot of challenges when it comes to creating a sustainable office environment including certain things outside of your control. It’s important to remember that positive change takes time and that any small step in the right direction is meaningful.

Here are some of the challenges we’ve experienced while pursuing a more sustainable workspace:

Amazon Dependence

Amazon and Amazon Prime make our lives considerably easier. Unfortunately, they also lead to bad habits, waste, unsustainable shipping, and a host of social and environmental issues.

Facility Heating and Cooling

Plank’s facilities are located in an older building in Downtown Montreal. The building has no smart systems, or accurate energy usage measurements available.  Any energy use we wish to track can only be estimated based on SQft, internal/external temperature, smart outlets, and total devices.

Internet Provider and Power Use

Plank’s facility internet provider is Beanfield. They currently have no public commitment to sustainability.


It’s important to ask questions. How was an object made? What happens to an object when its usefulness is done? What is the value of choosing sustainable over unstainable suppliers? Once you have answers, then it’s your responsibility to make better choices.

Our summer pilot project wraps up

Back in May, we held a hack day for cultural organizations. The resulting project was an app for Repercussion Theatre’s production of Julius Caesar, performed in parks around Montreal over the summer. The app allowed Francophone audience members to follow Shakespeare’s text in French, with prompts pushed from the stage manager to alert them to the current scene being performed. We wrote about the hack day and the show in the journal earlier this year.

By all accounts, Repercussion theatre had a great summer run of Julius Caesar. We were truly honoured to have a part in it. Our app was up and running for every performance between July 7th and August 3rd.

With the tour done, it’s time to reflect on our small part.

Reception and opening night

On opening night members of the Plank team and guests attended the season premiere in the Mount Royal cemetery. Warren said some quick thank you words from the stage and the crowd was told if they’d like to follow along with the script in French, they could visit on their mobile devices. The instructions were also printed in a full-page ad on the side of the playbill.


We are extremely happy that, averaged out, we hit our target usage. We didn’t have a lot to go on for what numbers we should be aiming for. Some of us had attended Shakespeare in the Park previously and knew their events drew anywhere from 200-2000 people.

It’s good to have some smart goals — so we pegged it at 5%. This would be people who at least opened the app each performance.

That number seemed high when we first discussed it — but surprisingly was mostly accurate. Truthfully it was a guesstimate as we didn’t have a lot of historical audience data to work from.

On the plays busiest night our app was opened by almost 8% of the attendees.

We saw this as a win!

The technology

The whole project was built on:

  • Digital Ocean droplet
  • Foundation v6
  • Laravel
  • Git
  • Adobe CreativeCloud
  • Paper App / iPad pro for early drawings and rapid prototyping
  • Pusher for websockets 

The script for “The Tragedy of Julius Caesar” was cleaned up and parsed using much more mundane methods (BBedit find and replace skills).

Some stats

During the summer run, saw:

  • 379 unique users
  • 609 sessions
  • The performance at the Centre Canadien d’Architecture (Tuesday Aug 2nd) saw the most use at 80+ users with the web-sockets keeping an average of 30 or so connections up throughout the night. This event had the largest attendance of the summer.
  • iOS usage came in at 63% and Android at 36%
  • iPhones account for 50%+ of the devices used and iPads at 5%
  • Samsung Galaxy devices led the Android charge with almost 10% of traffic


Here are some things we hadn’t considered, or feedback which shed new light on the problem we’d tried to solve:

  • We got word that a few users had been using the app the night before the event to see the dialogue. We had only ever imagined this being a “live tool”.
  • We saw a couple suggestions that offering a toggle to view the English script would be great. Shakespearean dialogue can move fast, and it would be nice to reference the script as the play unfolds. This idea could be extended to other languages, as well as offering a scene synopsis as each scene/act begins.
  • WIFI can be spotty at outdoor events. Shakespeare in the Park takes place in major urban parks, but we still saw issues with this. In particular, some areas at the top of Mount Royal offer known weak coverage depending on your provider.


It isn’t difficult to implement proper analytics to track exactly what people are doing with your app but it is tough to get in place in the space of a hack day. There are plenty of off-the-shelf solutions — but we simply didn’t have enough time to research and build them in.

Offering methods for the Repercussion Theatre staff to keep the scene up to date was a tough challenge. We suggested they find volunteers who could help “change the scene” — but we think we could do a lot more here. Ideas ranging from crowd-sourcing this task, to automating it (tough in their outdoor temporary environments) were suggested. The best case scenario would be a line-by-line indicator of the dialogue.

Next Steps

This pilot project was a success.

We are looking at different avenues to keep this project going and expand on it. We are looking forward to a continued collaboration with Repercussion to develop the vision for this application.

If you’d like to follow along, keep an eye on continuing development at the permanent home for the project,

Read more about the app and give us your feedback.