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5 Things to Know about Working with Independent Contractors in Canada

Posted by Karen McMullen


Dec 12, 2018 9:00:00 AM

5_Things_to_Know_about_Working_with_Independent_Contractors_in_CanadaWhether you’re looking to do business in Canada or just need to hire the right person for the job, you might be considering working with independent contractors in Canada. A Canadian contractor may have the right experience. They can also help you navigate the Canadian market and conduct business in Canada without needing to set up a permanent establishment.

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Before you hire an independent contractor, however, there are some things you should know. These five tips will help you ensure your working relationship with any independent contractor in Canada is as smooth as possible.

1. Make Sure You’re Hiring Independent Contractors

This may sound obvious, but employee misclassification is a problem for many employers inside Canada and outside as well. Employers believe they’re hiring an independent contractor, but the letter of the law states they’ve actually hired an employee.

Generally speaking, employees have different rights than contractors, which can cause problems if you classify someone as a contractor, but the law classifies the same person as an employee.

What’s the difference? Independent contractors usually have more say about the scope of the work and how it’s completed. They may be able to decide what materials are used, for example. They may also work offsite and they supply their own equipment. They may also subcontract the work.

2. You May Have Less Protection

When you hire an employee in Canada, your business will be able to add provisions about intellectual property, non-competition, and more into the contract language. When you hire an independent contractor, you may find you can’t add these protections or you may need to water them down.

Always be sure to check the legal framework in the province you’re operating in.

3. You Are a Client, Not an Employer

Independent contractors work for themselves. In this scenario, your business is a client, not an employer. This benefits you, as you don’t have employer responsibilities towards the contractor.

It does also mean you’ll need to take a step back when it comes to dictating what the contractor does or doesn’t do. They’ll set their schedule, and they’ll often work on their own site, with their own equipment. They may even decide to do business for other clients, including your competitors.

So long as the work is being completed on time and to standard, you don’t have much control.

4. You Pay for What You Get

When you hire an employee, you may need to pay benefits, commissions, bonuses, or any number of other types of compensation. As the employer, you determine these payments. You are also obligated to take payroll deductions and fund vacation for employees.

When you work with independent contractors, you’ll pay for the services or products you receive. There are “extras” you’ll need to pay. Working with independent contractors can thus reduce your overhead and save you a little bit of money.

5. Breaking up Is Easy

If you’re not satisfied with the service a contractor has provided, it’s easy to end the relationship. You’ll need to pay the bill, and then you’re free of the contractor. You’re under no obligation to hire them again. You don’t even need to contact them again.

If the work was truly unsatisfactory, you might even decide to negotiate a discount on the bill. The only way you’ll face a lawsuit is if you fail to pay. This is completely different from the employee relationship, where you may need to pay severance or negotiate a wrongful dismissal suit.

Not sure if hiring a contractor is the right move for you? Talk to a professional employer organization. They can help you navigate the ins and outs of Canadian employment law and help you decide if you need independent contractors, employees, or a mix of both.

12 Things an American Company Looking to Hire a Worker in Canada Needs to Know

Topics: Compliance

7 Things to Know about Workers’ Compensation in Canada

Posted by Stacey Duggan


Dec 10, 2018 9:00:00 AM

7_Things_to_Know_about_Workers_Compensation_in_CanadaNo employer likes to think there will be an accident in the workplace, but it’s a reality you must consider. It’s likely one of the reasons you carry insurance in your home country. If you have operations in Canada, you should be familiar with workers’ compensation.

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What exactly is workers’ compensation?

In Canada, it’s a program designed to protect workers if they should be injured or become ill in the workplace. It helps them cover out-of-pocket costs. As an employer, one of your responsibilities is working with workers’ compensation boards across Canada to make sure your employees have the right protections. Here are a few of the most important things for you to know.

1. Workers’ Compensation Is a Provincial Responsibility

There is no single body governing compensation for workers in Canada. Instead, each province maintains a Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) or similar body. They function like insurance providers, offering employers coverage for employees should something happen in the workplace.

The rules about who has to register vary by province. In BC, people who hire housecleaners or gardeners must register with the WCB. In the Northwest Territories, businesses applying for a license will need to register, even if they don’t have any employees.

2. The Rates Depend on a Number of Factors

How much will you pay for workers’ compensation insurance? It’s a common question from business owners.

The rates are usually given per $100 in payroll. Rates fluctuate depending on a number of factors. Different provinces have different rates. Your industry and your overall rating with the Board also factor into the rate you’ll pay.

3. An Independent Fund Protects Payments

One of the principles of Canadian workers’ compensation is that the funds used to pay any claims should be independent. They’re also collective, meaning all employers share responsibility for them.

You’ll pay into the fund, and if one of your employees makes a payable claim, they’ll be paid from that fund. This ensures funds are always available, so payments can be made on time.

4. Insurance Is No-Fault

The Workers’ Compensation Board in your province will investigate any claim made. If an employee files an accident report and claims they needed medical attention, the WCB will follow up to determine if payment needs to be made.

Compensation is based on the no-fault principle. If it’s determined the employee was injured or became ill in the workplace, compensation will likely be paid. It doesn’t matter if the injury or illness came about because of the employer or the employee’s actions.

5. There Are Many Benefits for Employees

What your employees will receive from the WCB will depend in part on where your operations are based. As a rule of thumb, they’ll receive health care payments, lost wages, and permanent disability if they can’t return to work.

If an employee is killed on the job or dies following a workplace injury, WCB may pay survivor benefits. Employees who suffer debilitating injuries or illnesses may also be covered for rehabilitation.

6. Who Is Covered Varies

If you’re required to register for workers’ compensation in your province, you may believe everyone in your company will be covered. This isn’t always true.

The director of companies, for example, may not be covered. In some provinces, children may be covered. Even independent contractors are sometimes covered by WCB premiums.

7. You Can Receive Good Coverage Even If You Don’t Need to Register

Some business owners opt not to register for WCB unless they’re required to by law. An accident, injury, and illness can happen in any workplace, however.

Registering with your provincial WCB can provide you with the protection your business needs. If you’re not sure if you need to be registered, consult with a PEO. They can help you determine your needs.

What US Companies Need to Know about Paying Employees in Canada

Topics: Compliance

Why Employ Americans with a PEO?

Posted by Karen McMullen


Dec 5, 2018 9:00:00 AM

Why_Employ_Americans_with_a_PEOEntering a new market is an exciting time for a business. Whether this is your first international market or one of several you’ve entered, you’re likely excited about the growth opportunity being presented to you.

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You may also be concerned about how exactly you’re going to pay your employees in the American market. Whether you’ve opened up a branch office and need to staff several positions or you’ve opened up several remote roles to Americans, you’re going to need to pay them.

The situation may leave you asking, “How do I pay my employees?”

There are several solutions you can try. One option might be to cut a check, which is old-fashioned, slow, and costly. Direct deposit can be another option, although you’ll have to factor in exchange rates and fees. Going through payment services like PayPal can be quite costly. On top of all of this, you’ll still need to worry about payroll taxes and remittances.

Another option you have is teaming up with a professional employer organization. This third-party provider takes all of the stress and worry out of paying your American employees.

The PEO Acts as the Employer

A professional employer organization acts as the employer of your American employees. They pay your employees on your behalf, using the resources they have at their disposal. It’s exactly like if you were paying the employees yourself via payroll, except the PEO is the one issuing payment.

Let Them Take Care of Payroll Taxes and Remittances

Another good reason to employ Americans via the services of a PEO is that the professional employer organization will take care of payroll taxes and remittances.

The IRS has strict rules about how payroll deductions are to be calculated, and their deadlines for remitting those deductions are unforgiving. The penalties are steep too. By working with a PEO, you can ensure you’re in the clear when it comes to calculating your payroll taxes and remitting them.

In the United States, each state also has its own rules for payroll taxes and remittances. The expertise of a professional employer organization is invaluable, especially if you’re going to be employing people in several states.

They Understand the Law

American employment law is quite different from Canadian employment law, or from employment law in the UK or Australia. It’s one of the best reasons you should enlist the help of a qualified professional employer organization.

Your American employees will be governed by the federal and state laws pertaining to their employment. If you don’t know the rules, you might run into trouble.Worker classification is a great example. What you consider a contractor or vendor may be defined differently in the state where you’re employing Americans.

The PEO can help you navigate these choppy legal waters and help ensure your compliance.

You Can Use Their Resources

You might have heard about the Affordable Care Act in the United States, which compels employers to offer health insurance to their employees. You may also want to offer other benefits to your employees.

You’ll also need insurance to operate your business. Different states have different requirements and minimum insurance levels.

Setting up benefits or getting an insurance policy can be tricky. Instead, team up with a PEO for your American operations and make the process smoother.

As you can see, there are many reasons you should partner with a PEO to pay your American employees. If you have some American employees to pay, why not talk to a professional employer organization today?

What Are You Leaving to Chance by Handling Payroll on Your Own

Topics: Professional Employer Organization

5 Global Expansion Strategies to Consider

Posted by Shannon Dowdall


Dec 3, 2018 9:00:00 AM

5_Global_Expansion_Strategies_to_ConsiderA growing business is good news for any business owner, and it’s likely one of your goals. One of the routes to growth you may be exploring is a global expansion.

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The idea of expanding your business globally is attractive for many reasons. It provides more opportunities and benefits beyond mere growth. You’ll want to be sure you’re expanding wisely, however, and to do so, you’ll need the right strategy.

Whether you’re just beginning to consider an international expansion or you’re planning to revise your plan, you’ll want to consider these five strategies for a successful global expansion. Adopting one or more of them could be the difference between runaway success and a lackluster launch.

1. Pick the Right Partners for Global Expansion

As you begin to move outwards from your home country, you’ll likely realize foreign markets can be difficult to crack. You may not have the understanding of the local culture needed to drive demand for your product or service. You might not know where to find the talent you need.

Other challenges abound, from marketing to human resources legislation compliance and more.

One of the best things you can do is find partners to work with as you enter new markets. Bringing on a professional employer organization ought to be your first move when you want to expand globally.

2. Adopt a Clear Strategy for Your Product or Service

The next thing you’ll want to consider when you’re expanding internationally is how your product or service will be received around the world. What sets you apart? Why should people want what your business offers?

A clear product or service strategy will help you define and redefine yourself in shifting markets. In turn, this helps define you to your clients and your potential customers. Give them a reason to choose your brand over the competition.

3. Think Proactively

Many business owners like to play a game of wait-and-see. This often works in your home market, where you can stand to take a few more risks. You know the market well, and you have the infrastructure to react quickly to changes.

When a global expansion is the end game, however, a reactive strategy isn’t going to serve you well. Waiting to see how things pan out could leave you lurching from crisis to crisis or taking unnecessary risks.

Instead, plan a long-term strategy and try to anticipate the changes in the market you’re likely to encounter. Be ready to take proactive steps to secure your investment in your global operations.

4. Reinvest in the Business

Some businesses that aim to expand globally take any revenue gain they get and record it as profit. Instead, you should look at revenue gains from a global expansion as opportunities to reinvest in your business.

You may decide to use this money to reinvest into the market or even to enter a new market.

This strategy creates a cascade effect, whereby each market you expand into funds additional expansions. If your sights are truly set on a global expansion, this is a great way to achieve it.

5. Go Lean in a New Market

You should be entering international markets with a lean approach. Hold off on investing in infrastructure until you’re sure the new expansion is viable. Local employees can help you evaluate your opportunities and fine-tune your strategy.

If you’re thinking about going global with your business, these five strategies can help you achieve success as you continue to grow. If you need more advice as you cross international borders, don’t be afraid to ask for a helping hand.

What US Companies Need to Know about Paying Employees in Canada

Topics: Business Expansion

5 Things to Know about US Work Visas and Timelines

Posted by Stacey Duggan


Nov 28, 2018 9:00:00 AM

5_Things_to_Know_about_US_Work_Visas_and_TimelinesYou’re about to take the next step with your business. It’s time to expand across the border into the American market. As you begin to set up shop in the United States, you’ll likely want to send in some of your most trusted and senior employees to oversee operations.

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These employees may be members of senior management, or they might be HR professionals responsible for training and employee development. Their tasks might include hiring new American employees or developing policies to ensure your business operations are as smooth as possible. You may even need to send in some seasoned experts.

If this describes your situation, you need to know all about US work visas and the timelines for processing them. You want to be sure your employees have the proper paperwork before they set out across the border. Keep these five things in mind as you begin to prepare employees for an international exchange.

1. Entrepreneurs Don’t Need Work Visas

If you’re planning a trip to the United States to start your international operations, you don’t need a work visa. You will need some different paperwork.

Entrepreneurs will need to set up a legal business entity before they can begin US operations. Your other option will be to engage a professional employer organization to take care of many of the human resources operations associated with your business.

If you’ve already established your business operations and you’re sending in other employees on your behalf, then work visas are the appropriate documentation.

2. Employees Will Need to Prove Their Credentials

To apply for most US work visas, your employees will need to present a few different pieces of documentation. One of them will be an offer of employment. This will be from your US branch or subsidiary.

They’ll also need to provide documentation of their education and skills. This might include a copy of a diploma or university degree. Your employees may need to prove their expertise in certain areas.

3. Your Employees Must Be in Good Health

When applying for US work visas, your employees may need to submit to a medical examination. This is usually a simple physical, and it can often be performed by their family doctor or another medical professional.

Most countries, including the US, want to ensure the people crossing the borders are healthy. They may be concerned about infectious diseases. Another concern is the strain that could be placed on limited medical services in the host country.

The requirement may also depend on what job the employee will be completing. Those who work with the general public are more likely to need a health check. Those who have lived or worked in certain countries may also be asked for a medical check.

4. New Trade Agreements Will Affect Visa Programs

A new trade agreement between the US, Canada, and Mexico will likely usher in changes to the existing NAFTA visa programs. While this new deal isn’t yet in place, employers should expect new rules to come into play.

Changing rules and requirements could cause headaches. If you can, have employees apply for the TN visa sooner rather than later.

5. Total Processing Time Can Take Six Months

It can take time to get US work visas, so you’ll want to have your employees start their applications early on. Once it’s been decided someone will be going to the US, have them begin their petition.

It often takes three to six months for an approval notice to be issued once the petition is filed. If your employees need to work in the US, you’ll want to be sure you get started on this paperwork as soon as possible.

If you keep these things in mind, you can make it easier for your employees to obtain the right US work visas when they need them.

What Are You Leaving to Chance by Handling Payroll on Your Own

Topics: Business Expansion

5 Processes Canadian Companies Should Have in Place Before Proceeding with a US Expansion

Posted by Anna Mastrandrea


Nov 26, 2018 9:00:00 AM

5_Processes_Canadian_Companies_Should_Have_in_Place_Before_Proceeding_with_a_US_ExpansionAre you thinking about taking your Canadian business south into the US? It’s a fairly common strategy among Canadian companies. It’s often one that makes a good deal of sense.

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Before proceeding with a US expansion, however, you should make sure you have things in order. Are you truly ready to cross the border and set up shop?

Many businesses go cross-border before they’re ready to, which can cause all kinds of headaches. Before you go south, make sure you have these five processes in place. They’ll help your expansion efforts proceed smoothly.

1. Companies Planning a US Expansion Should Partner with a PEO

One of the first things to do if you’re planning a US expansion is to find a trustworthy professional employer organization to partner with.

Why should Canadian companies partner with a PEO when a US expansion is on the table? The PEO can help you make the expansion process easier. They can assist with HR functions like payroll and compliance. They can also offer keen insights into the market. They may even be able to help you get started sooner by operating on your behalf.

If you’re not already working with a PEO, you’ll want to partner with one before you begin your expansion activities. Having this partnership in place will assist you throughout the process.

2. Shore up Your Hiring Process

The next thing Canadian companies wanting to expand to the US should look to is their hiring processes. Chances are you’ll want to hire at least a few local employees to assist with your US operations.

Hiring can be tricky, even in the Canadian market. How will you go about finding the right people in the US? Ensuring you have a great hiring process in place before you expand can help you find and hire the right people the first time.

3. Check in on Your Cash Flow

One of the biggest strains on a business that is trying to expand in any direction is finances. To that end, Canadian companies planning a US expansion in the near future should check in on their cash flow.

Cash flow is important when it comes to ensuring your business has the liquidity it needs to continue financing operations. Ultimately, your business may look good on paper, but gaps can leave the business floundering.

Good cash flows stem, in part, from good bookkeeping processes and accounting procedures.

4. You Should Have a Process for Compliance

Another thing you may want to consider before you expand your business south of the border is how you deal with compliance. If you’re barely keeping up with regulatory requirements in Canada, you might want to think twice about adding another layer of complexity to your operations.

Moving south of the border means you’ll need to comply with American business regulations, and you’ll need to monitor compliance on this front as well. If you already have a good compliance monitoring process in place, you’re halfway there.

5. Have a Strategic Plan in Hand (and a Process for Planning)

A strategic plan will guide your business as it continues to grow. In fact, your US expansion may be one part of the strategic plan for your business.

You should have a solid strategic planning process in place as well. Whether you prefer to undertake strategic planning on a five-year basis or you’d rather revise the plan on the go, your process should allow you to refocus to keep pace with an ever-changing market.

If you already have these processes in place, you might be ready to expand your business to the United States. If so, get in touch with your PEO and discuss what options are available to you as your business continues to grow.

What Are You Leaving to Chance by Handling Payroll on Your Own

Topics: Business Expansion

6 Things International Businesses Should Know about Cannabis Legalization in Canada

Posted by Ray Gonder


Nov 21, 2018 9:00:00 AM

6_Things_International_Businesses_Should_Know_about_Cannabis_Legalization_in_CanadaThe Cannabis Act came into effect on October 17, 2018, paving the way for recreational cannabis all across Canada. While many Canadians celebrated, those in the business community were wondering what impacts this would have on their workplaces and operations.

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International businesses with Canadian operations and those looking to expand to the Canadian market are particularly concerned with cannabis legalization in Canada. What new responsibilities does this create for international employers, and what does it mean in terms of operations?

If this sounds like your situation, there are a few things you should know about cannabis legalization. Here are some of the most important.

1. Employment Contracts May Need to Be Revised

As an international employer, you may need to look at the employment contracts you’re using in Canada. You may need to revise the language used.

Previously, many employers discussed cannabis alongside with other illegal substances. As cannabis is no longer illegal in Canada, this sort of language needs to be removed or revised. You can still enforce policies about the use of cannabis in the workplace, but it is no longer criminal.

2. You Should Enforce Policies about Impairment

Under the Occupational Health and Safety Act, you’re responsible for ensuring your employees are completing their work safely and in line with the law. Employees who are impaired on the job site could pose a hazard to their co-workers or to themselves.

You can restrict the use of cannabis in the workplace after cannabis legalization in Canada. You may want to model your policy around any restrictions you have in place about the use of alcohol. You wouldn’t allow an employee who was impaired by alcohol to continue working, so treat those using cannabis in a similar manner.

3. Medical Marijuana Is an Exception to the Rules

Canadian employers have a duty to accommodate those who use medical marijuana. Employees will need to provide you with a copy of their authorization. In this situation, you may need to provide modified duties the employee can safely perform.

These employees will still need to respect both the law and your company policies. They need to respect their co-workers’ right to safety in the workplace, and they should comply with policies regarding impairment and cannabis in the workplace.

4. Cannabis Users Must Comply with Smoke-free Laws

Another thing you’ll need to monitor with cannabis in the workplace is the smoking of cannabis. Some employees will undoubtedly smoke cannabis. Hopefully, they will do this after their shift has ended, but you’ll still want to enforce rules about when and where they can smoke.

Several provinces have smoke-free laws, and these laws apply to smoking marijuana as much as they apply to cigarettes. Your employees will need to smoke outside, a certain distance from doors and windows. Shelters can be provided, but they may need to meet certain criteria.

5. Your Employees May Have Trouble Crossing Borders

Another thing you may want to keep in mind is that Canadians have been encountering increased difficulties at international borders. This is particularly true at the US border. Increased suspicion may mean it’s difficult or impossible for an employee to cross the border.

If you need Canadian employees to cross the border for any reason, be sure to provide the proper paperwork.

6. You’ll Want to Update Your Insurance

The insurance industry has been changing several kinds of clauses to make way for cannabis legalization in Canada. You may want to review your own policies and ensure they’re up to date.

Policies for commercial vehicles and for buildings should be updated to reflect cannabis legalization in Canada. If you work with a professional employer organization, ask them if your insurance is up to date.

Cannabis legalization in Canada has paved the way for big changes. International businesses need to be prepared.

12 Things an American Company Looking to Hire a Worker in Canada Needs to Know

Topics: Compliance

Why Some International Businesses Struggle to Expand into the US

Posted by Ray Gonder


Nov 19, 2018 9:00:00 AM

Why_Some_International_Businesses_Struggle_to_Expand_into_the_USSometimes, you don’t set out to create a multinational company. In other cases, an expansion becomes a serious consideration along the way. In either case, when the opportunity arises, many business owners jump at the chance.

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Not every business that expands into the US market succeeds, however, and this is true even of businesses that have already expanded successfully into other markets. The American market is often very different from the national market of a country such as the UK or France.

There are quite a few reasons international businesses might struggle as they expand into the United States. Here are a few of the most common ones, which you can avoid simply by being aware of them.

The Product or Service Doesn’t Translate

Some international businesses just don’t do proper market research before expanding into the US.

Even if you do your market research, however, the product or service may still fail to reach an American audience at large. The market may be quite limited or you may find initial enthusiasm quickly wanes.

This is very true for products and services from European cultures, where sensibilities are quite different.

You Don’t Adjust Your Marketing Plan

Another source of trouble for international businesses is getting the tone of marketing and advertising right for the American market. Again, culture plays a large role here. What appeals to consumers in the UK doesn’t necessarily translate for those in the US.

Odd ads and bungled marketing plans can turn even the best-planned expansion into a struggle.

You Didn’t Consider Logistics

The logistics of doing business in the United States is often one of the steepest learning curves from companies from countries like the UK or other, smaller markets. Not only is the US market larger, so too is the geographical space.

The end result is it can be much more difficult to deliver services and products in the United States. If you don’t properly consider logistics, you may find your business struggling to meet demand.

You Can’t Find the Right People to Staff Operations

It can be very difficult to find the right people to hire for your business, even in your home job market.

As you expand into the US, you’ll likely want to hire American employees. Without knowledge of the local job market, you may find you have even more trouble finding the right people.

You’re Not Aware of Employment Law

Do you know the employment legislation of your home country inside out? Chances are you’re familiar with most of the rules, but there are likely things even you don’t know.

If so, it’s reasonable to expect that you and your employees won’t know American employment law inside out either. You’re more likely to be caught unaware in the American market.

This can lead to penalties and audits, all of which cost more money and affect your bottom line. You can avoid these unsavory outcomes by both familiarizing yourself with the law and by working with a knowledgeable PEO.

You Struggle with Payroll

Another, more specific area of the law you’ll want to be aware of is payroll and remittances to the IRS. Again, mistakes in this area can cost you extra time, money, and frustration, as it can lead to penalties and audits. It can also result in costly errors.

Avoid this by working with a trustworthy PEO. They can help you expand your international business with ease and avoid some of the most common struggles you’ll encounter.

What Are You Leaving to Chance by Handling Payroll on Your Own

Topics: Business Expansion

6 Tips for Setting up Your Business in Another Country

Posted by Corinne Camara


Nov 14, 2018 9:00:00 AM

6_Tips_for_Setting_up_Your_Business_in_Another_CountryExpanding your business is both an exciting opportunity and a challenge. This is especially true if you’re planning to expand the business internationally. Crossing the border into a new country comes with its own unique set of challenges.

If you’re planning to expand internationally in the near future, you’ll want to keep these six tips in mind. They’ll make the challenging process a little simpler.

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1. Get Familiar with the Law

The first thing you’ll want to do before you set up your business in another country is review the legislation. This can include employment legislation, financial legislation, and legislation regulating your market. For example, Canadian law about employee safety, employee breaks, and even leaves and absences can be quite different from American legislation.

You’ll also want to take a look at legislation around duties and imports. You may want to enlist the help of a lawyer or another trusted professional. No one expects you to be an expert, but it does help to gain some familiarity.

2. Think about Your Business Structure

Another area of law it’s prudent to look at is tax legislation. Your business will be taxed differently according to a number of different rules.

You’ll want to carefully consider your business structure for this reason. Different structures have different advantages and disadvantages. You’ll want to be sure the option you choose is tax efficient.

3. Work with a PEO to Employ Workers

When you do finally begin to cross the border, you’ll want to employ employees for the business. This can be a tricky process to navigate for quite a few reasons.

Working with a professional employer organization might be the answer you’re looking for. The PEO acts as the employer, which means you can leverage their infrastructure to provide human resources support for your business operations on the other side of the border.

4. Prepare for Differences in Work Culture

There are some countries where you expect to run into cultural differences. For example, most people wouldn’t be surprised to learn that Japan and America have very different work cultures.

More shocking is how different the work culture can be between two very similar countries. Take, for example, Canada and the United States. While these two countries have very similar cultures, there are a number of significant differences that might surprise you.

Wherever you decide to set up your business, you’ll want to do some research into the local culture and learn about what differences you can expect. Then you can take steps to ensure both sides of the cultural divide are respected.

5. Don’t Rush

You’ve done your market research, and you’ve looked at the logistics. You know, however, that things don’t always play out in practice as well as they do on paper. This is very much the case when it comes to setting up your business in another country.

There may be unexpected costs, or demand may not be as high as you anticipated. Perhaps the market has changed since you did your research. In any case, it’s best to start expanding slowly. Be sure to carefully choose your location. It’s better to build demand than to jump into a market where demand doesn’t exist.

6. Think about Cross-Border Opportunities

You may want to send some of your talented employees to oversee operations at the new location as you set up. Alternately, you might want to invite some of your new employees to spend a week or two with you at your head office to learn about the company.

These cross-border opportunities present their own challenges in terms of paperwork. Work with a PEO to make sure everything is being completed as necessary.

With these tips, expanding your business into a new country can be a breeze.

What US Companies Need to Know about Paying Employees in Canada

Topics: Business Expansion

Debunking Common PEO Myths

Posted by Karen McMullen


Nov 12, 2018 9:00:00 AM

Debunking_Common_PEO_MythsHuman resources is an important part of your business. Unfortunately, many HR tasks, such as employing and paying employees, can be quite time intensive. They can become even more complex when you expand your business into another country, such as Canada or the US.

12 Things an American Company Looking to Pay a Worker In Canada Needs to Know

If you’re looking for ways to make things easier, you might be wondering about working with a professional employer organization (PEO). PEOs are designed to take on a number of the HR tasks you need to complete to keep your business running smoothly in a new country.

Many business owners worry that working with a PEO isn’t the right option. There are many reasons for this, including some of the common myths about PEOs. Most of these myths have no basis in truth. Working with a professional employer organization might, in fact, be a great choice for your business.

A PEO Partnership Is Only for Large Businesses

One of the most prevalent myths about PEOs is that you can only partner with one if you’re running a large business. This idea stops many small and mid-sized business owners from partnering with a professional employer organization, even if it would benefit them.

Where did this myth come from? Most small business owners believe they must have a certain number of employees to need any sort of human resources help. They might also believe their situation is so simple that they don’t need help and they can manage it on their own.

This can lead to costly mistakes and inefficient processes. If you’re unsure or feeling overwhelmed about employing workers in Canada or the US, don’t forget you can ask for help, no matter how large or small your organization is.

PEOs Are the Same as Staffing Firms

PEOs and staffing firms have some similarities, so it’s easy to see how people could get mixed up on this point.

That said, a professional employer organization and a staffing firm are not equal. PEOs provide much more comprehensive support to their clients. PEOs don’t supply labour but they do manage the responsibilities of employing a permanent workforce.

You Have No Control

Another common misconception about working with PEOs is that you’ll be giving up your control. You won’t have any say in how other HR policies are adopted and enacted in your business.

Your business is still your business, even when you start working with a PEO. The professional employer organization is a partner in helping you run your business in the most effective, efficient way. To that end, they’re going to work closely with you to make sure your policies and practices are enacted, that you stay compliant with the law, and more.

It Will Be Too Expensive

This is probably the #1 myth about PEOs. Many business owners believe working with a PEO is unaffordable. They may think it’s more economical to keep their HR functions in-house, even when things aren’t getting done or the HR team is overwhelmed by foreign compliance.

In many cases, a professional employer organization is more affordable than you might think. New technology is helping PEOs deliver better, more streamlined services to their clients for lower costs.

Your HR Team Can Handle It

Another reason people avoid working with professional employer organizations is that they believe their HR team is more than capable of handling the demands of these tasks in another country.

While your HR team is no doubt talented and capable, think about the additional demands you’re placing on them by asking them to look after international employees as well. They may have more than enough to do when administering HR for your own office, and they may not have the knowledge and expertise required to manage foreign compliance.

There are many different myths about PEOs, but most of them can be thoroughly debunked. If you’ve been hesitating about working with a professional employer organization for any of these reasons, you can ignore them and embark on a great partnership today.

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Topics: Professional Employer Organization

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