The Employment Opportunities List

The Ultimate Source for HR Jobs and Blogs. Friends Helping Friends of Friends.

Increasingly Complex Payroll Needs Drives Demand

Getting employees’ pay cheques right is one of HR’s core tasks, but as businesses become more complicated – from international operations to different types of contracts and increasing compliance requirements – payroll professionals with the right combination of skills and experience are in high demand.

This is challenging Canadian business leaders, who struggle to find the talent they need.

According to the Hays 2015 Canadian Payroll Salary Guide, half of employers say their biggest recruitment challenge is finding the credentials, system, or compliance knowledge they need.

Employees with the trifecta of skills, experience and personality fit are highly sought after. Compensation remaining the biggest recruitment challenge, with competitive market and career progression also rating highly as the factors driving employers’ hiring struggles.

More than 80 per cent of employers intend to increase salaries in 2015, but half of employers overall say they either are not meeting market rates, or are unaware of what the market rate is. Employers need to be aware of what their competitors are offering to ensure their packages are competitive. However, only one company can pay the most, and there are many other ways to compete for talent.

While salary was rated as the main reason to leave a company, in combination career progression, company culture, and benefits outweigh base compensation.

As employers address long-term talent shortages a succession plan is vital to ensure the talent strategy aligns with business goals. Just 20 per cent of payroll employers say they have a succession plan, and of those with a plan, 69 per cent say that less than a quarter of their employees know about it. These employers are missing out on an important retention tool. Employees who know about their potential career paths within a company are less likely to feel driven to seek new opportunities elsewhere.

Payroll professionals who are looking to maximize their market value should look at getting certified – those with certifications earned up to 20 per cent more than their uncertified counterparts, especially at senior levels – and try to get as varied experience as possible. Career progression planning should be a collaboration between employer and employee, so talk to your manager about the options for advancement and create a plan to get the career progression, skills, and new challenges you need to be fulfilled in your job.

Forward-thinking employers will create their own talent pipeline of agile employees. There can be hesitation to invest in employee training and accreditation support as employers are concerned employees will leave for a competitor when their course is completed. However, the bigger risk is in not upskilling your staff and ensuring you have the talent you need to achieve your business goals.

Training and development can be a strong retention tool, and will connect strategically to your succession planning. Look at moving individuals to different roles to get comprehensive experience across a range of jurisdictions, provinces, client groups, and types of pay. Where possible employers should give junior employees an opportunity to lead small teams and projects to help develop the technical and managerial skills needed for future leadership roles.

Companies without the same organizational flexibility can upskill their employees by training them on advanced tasks such as payroll accounting, involving them in implementations, and finding opportunities for them to develop their understanding of related tasks such as HR, benefits, and compensation reviews.

Learn more about the Canadian payroll market. Request the guide today.

Hays Canada division manager Rachel Finan has more than 14 years of experience working in HR recruitment, She excels in making the right match and brings expert insight into market trends, employer needs, and candidate requirements.


Mars 2015 2As I write this, I am sitting in an Adirondack chair at our cottage that overlooks a lake. Directly in front of me is a white speed boat, filled with kids, off to a great afternoon of water skiing. The little boy next door is on his dock fishing, successfully, being coaxed by his grandfather. The weather is warm but not hot. The skies are cloudy but it is not raining. I have a half-empty bottle of Mike’s Hard Black Cherry Lemonade next to me. My husband is beside me, reading, and my dog is sound asleep behind me exhausted after chasing balls for hours. I can hear the waves crashing on the shore.

I am content.

Should I be? After all, I’m just a bystander in a beautiful scene. I’m not out on that lake today. It is so cloudy that I won’t see the sun anytime soon. I periodically feel a small drop of rain on my hands. I am going to need to get up soon to get another drink. The skiier just fell, again. Writing a blog post is sort of work, after all.

But I am content. I don’t have to be in the scene to be in the moment. I really don’t have anything to do today that can’t wait until tomorrow or even the day after that. I have my “Gone Fishin'” out-of-office message on both my e-mail and voicemail. I don’t mind the periodic droplets of rain. They’re kind of refreshing.

I rarely feel the same contentment at work. In recent years I’ve been working to try and find a way of bringing the joy I feel sitting in a peaceful setting into some of the interactions with my clients. Even though blow ups are rare and there’s always a solution to a problem, even when you are a consultant, HR is rarely all smiles and cheer. Or even a small sense of relaxation. We have things to do, always. You can’t coast in HR.

Or can we? Should we? Can we be content at breakneck speed?

Sitting here, I’ve done a little research on the word contentment and the ingredients for contentment. The vast majority of studies and experts suggest that contentment has a lot to do with feeling some sort of gratitude. For the privilege of earning enough money to be able to sit and gaze into a lake once in a while with few worries. For the luck in finding a soul mate who enjoys just sitting here with me, doing a whole lot of nuthin’, some of the time. For the gift of a dog who is well-behaved most of the time and is cute as pie when he is sleeping on the grass. For the challenge my work brings me to fix broken things. For the experience of working with many, many different people who teach me things every day. For being able to tap into deeper resources needed to stay ahead of the curve. For being able to publish whatever I feel like.

Imagine if we in HR had a magical formula that would move everyone we work with to a state of zen. Would our engines move faster, better, more efficiently?

Are you content right now? If you are, what brings you to the state of contentment? How can you make that infectious? How can you find that state in whatever surrounds you?

According to a Gallup study, only 26% of us feel content by our career. What matters most? It’s the things that our career often brings, money and fun/recreation as well as romance. So the question is how do we bring that full circle back to our career.

Back home and at work I think I’m going to start clearing out my clutter and improving my view.

What about you?


long lake viewOn the morning of June 26, 2015, I put on my swimming suit and swam from the dock at our cottage on Lake Redstone to the flag across the channel that is barely visible in the picture.

I don’t know exactly how far that is, but round trip I would guess it is close to a mile.

I have witnesses. Being the person in the group normally holding the camera though, this time there are no photographs.

Or that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

My days of batsuit flying are long past. Last year I tried whitewater paddleboarding down the Credit River and nearly killed myself and thought my days of challenging sports feats was behind me. But that flag over there had been teasing me, coaxing me to swim to it, and so once I had convinced my husband to be my spotter on the trip, I was off to conquer it.

We in HR have a problem. We aren’t engineers and so we don’t invent things. We aren’t carpenters so we don’t build things. We aren’t generally entrepreneurs and we don’t create companies. We are bureaucrats and mess cleaners and sometimes strategists. But we don’t have a good outlet in our work that smacks a good “ta da” or true sense of achievement. In HR, there are few trophies.

But underneath, we are engineers and carpenters and entrepreneurs. We sometimes just need another outlet other than the workplace to display those capabilities and feel good about our accomplishments.

I recently saw a news program where they suggested that kite surfing was the modern golf game. They suggested that if you wanted to attract private equity you had to be good at kite surfing, which as I understand it is very difficult to master. This saddens me because I’ve been spending years trying to get better at golf!

But then there’s open water swimming, one important leg of any triathalon. The one leg I can do.   The one I can do better, faster, each time. The one where I can get past the grossness of swimming in something where I can’t see the bottom. The one that taps into my skills of an earlier age. The one that carries a small risk that I might drown.

Where do you get your sense of achievement?