3 years ago
January 6, 2015

How Does a U.S. Company Payroll Their Canadian Sales People?

With the right Canadian payroll service a U.S. company can expand their book of business without much complication.

Rhys Metler

Although the U.S. and Canada are two separate countries the lines of business often cross the border as companies provide goods and services to their neighbor. A company in the United States can often provide excellent customer service to their Canadian client via phone, web chat or through the export and import of goods but expanding that business and growing a company’s reach inside the other country is often very difficult without someone on the ground meeting the potential customer face to face. This is especially true if the company has a direct competitor with a sales force that is able to meet the client and form a relationship solidifying the business partnership. 

However, there is much more to consider besides the potential revenue and finding the right employee when a company decides to expand its sales force into Canada. How does a U.S. company hire a Canadian and ensure that they understand and can comply with very different employment rules and regulations? Employment and labour relations in Canada are very different than in the U.S. and vary from province to province. Fines and penalties can be hefty for a company unable to keep up with the ever changing policies. Canada also has very different compensation packages for employees as government benefits for Canadians vastly differ than those offered to a U.S. worker. How does a U.S. company ensure that the plan they offer to a Canadian is equivalent to what their U.S. counterpart has?

The above on its own can seem daunting but add to it the fact that in order to have an employee in Canada, the U.S. company must register with the Canadian government and establish an administrative presence by opening accounts with the various government agencies, banking institutions and insurance providers. The company must then ensure that these accounts are kept up to date and compliant with the regulations that vary with each province.

The hurdles seem vast, yet there is significant flow from the U.S. to Canada when it comes to employment. 

One option would be to engage in legal advice to ensure the company has not only met their due diligence when it comes to hiring a Canadian but also to make sure the company has met all their obligations as a new employer in Canada. This engagement would be ongoing as the legal firm keeps the company abreast of the evolving changes to employment law and aids them in many of the tasks associated with human resources such as employment agreements, health & safety policies and procedures, misconduct or termination and other sensitive employment issues. This option can meet the needs of the U.S. company but can be extremely costly and still leaves them open to risk and liability.

A very popular partnership in the U.S. is utilizing a Professional Employment Organization (PEO) to act as the employer in all aspects of payroll, human resources and government compliance. The PEO specializes in ensuring the employees are paid correctly, all payroll administration including government

remittances are complete and on time. They are experts when it comes to employment standards as well and ensure that proper policies and procedures are in place to satisfy all government agencies.

This employer of record type of partnership has now moved across the border into Canada with payroll and HR support companies like our partners at The Payroll Edge. A Canadian employer of record company can help U.S. companies expand their sales force without the risk and complication of registering a business presence here. The sales person is still controlled by the U.S. firm in regards to schedule and expectations but because the Canadian payroll provider has taken on the employee as one of their own, they ensure that all legal and government compliance is in place and continues for as long as the worker is in their employ.

With the right Canadian payroll service like The Payroll Edge, a U.S. company cannot only satisfy the needs of their Canadian clients with face to face interaction, but expand their book of business without much complication.

This blog post is by our guest poster Sue McKechnie of The Payroll Edge

The Payroll Edge is Canada’s Small Business Payroll Services Provider, with more than 25 years of trusted expertise, processing payroll for hundreds of companies. US firms expanding into Canada have no problems hiring Canadian staff when The Payroll Edge is their Professional Employment Organization (PEO) in Canada. For more information, contact Sue McKechnie at  smckechnie@staffedge.com

Rhys Metler

Rhys is a tenacious, top performing Senior Sales Recruiter with 11+ years of focused experience in the Digital Media, Mobile, Software, Technology and B2B verticals. He has a successful track record of headhunting top performing sales candidates for some of the most exciting brands in North America. He is a Certified Recruitment Specialist (CRS) and has expert experience in prospecting new business, client retention/renewals and managing top performing sales and recruitment teams. Rhys enjoys spending quality time with his wife, son, and two daughters, BBQing on a hot summer day, tropical vacations and cottaging.