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An Educational Service of CanPay Software Inc.
July 2011

Contents:

• Welcome
• What's New
• GrandMaster Update


Featured Article:

Cutting Payroll Doesn't Always Pay Off (Conclusion)

Tip of the Month:

Report on Hirings Program
  Welcome!

July 2011 - Welcome to the latest edition of The Payroll News. As always, please feel free to forward this newsletter to your friends and associates who are interested in keeping up with the latest changes in the Payroll industry. Or better yet, subscribe them for free using the Tell Others About Us link.


What's New in Canadian Payroll

Listed here are recent changes in legislation on Federal and Provincial levels that may impact your payroll calculations. Please view the following list for changes that affect your region.

FEDERAL:

July 14, 2011 - Changes to the rules for deducting Canada Pension Plan (CPP) contributions - On January 1, 2012, changes to the rules for deducting CPP contributions will come into effect. Starting January 1, 2012, you may have to deduct CPP contributions from the pensionable earnings you pay an employee who is at least 60 years of age but under 70, even if the employees is receiving a CPP or QPP retirement pension. (Full Story)

June 23, 2011 - Changes to Form T244 - Registered Pension Plan Annual Information Return - The CRA has released the revisions to form T244 - Registered Pension Plan Annual Information Return. Visit the following link to review the revised document. (Full Story)

June 22, 2011 - Government of Canada taking action to increase labour mobility for nurses - The Government of Canada is helping nurses practice their profession anywhere in Canada, wherever opportunities or labour shortages may exist. Support has been announced for the College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta to help the College work with stakeholders to establish national standards for the nursing profession so that practical nurses can work anywhere in the country without having to re-certify their credentials. (Full Story)

June 10, 2011 - Government of Canada Creates Summer Jobs for Students - The Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development announced today the creation of over 36,000 student jobs thanks to the Canada Summer Jobs program. Starting in 2011, the Government has permanently increased the budget for Canada Summer Jobs by $10 million. The additional funding will create as many as 3,500 additional jobs for students this summer, benefiting communities and strengthening local economies right across Canada. (Full Story)

June 9, 2011 - Interest rates for the third calendar quarter - The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) today announced the prescribed annual interest rates that will apply to any amounts owed to the CRA and to any amounts the CRA owes to individuals and corporations. These rates are calculated quarterly in accordance with applicable legislation and will be in effect from July 1, 2011 to September 30, 2011. (Full Story)

June 7, 2011 - Partnerships - Deferral of Corporate Tax - The 2011 The proposes that certain corporations will be required to accrue additional income (other than dividends) from the partnership of which it is a member for the portion of the partnership's fiscal period that falls within the corporation's taxation year (stub period accrual income). (Full Story)

June 7, 2011 - Changes to T4A Slip - Box 048 - The CRA redesigned the T4A slip to simplify reporting requirements, reduce the burden for the filer and increase data quality. The 2010 version of the T4A slip reflects the redesigned look and accommodates the T4A reporting requirements for all tax years. The slip has been converted from the previous set-format design to a generic style similar to the T4 slip, facilitating any future changes. (Full Story)

June 7, 2011 - Hiring Credit for Small Business - The Federal budget introduced the HCSB - a one-time credit of up to $1,000 based on the increase in an employer's employment insurance (EI) premiums paid for 2011 over those paid for 2010. A small business whose total employer's EI premiums paid for 2010 was $10,000 or less and whose total premiums increased in 2011 is eligible for a credit. (Full Story)

Alberta:

July 5, 2011 - Positive workplace safety results a good sign for Alberta's young workers - Results of a month-long inspection campaign focused on young workers (aged 15-24) indicate a commitment to workplace health and safety by employers and their staff. Unlike the two previous focused inspection campaigns on commercial construction and powered mobile equipment including forklifts, there were no stop-work or stop-use orders issued. (Full Story)

June 28, 2011 - New online resource helps employers and human resources professionals understand foreign-earned education - A new tool will help employers and human resources professionals better understand academic credentials earned abroad. The online tool will improve the attraction and retention of newcomers which is an important part of addressing the province's future labour shortage. (Full Story)

June 16, 2011 - WCB-Alberta-making good performance matter - A 2010 report shows that the Alberta WCB is helping injured workers retain their independence and get back to work safely. 91.3 per cent of the clients they cared for were able to return to work in 2010. By getting back to work, injured workers improve their chances of a healthy recovery, increase their ability to recover their earnings and advance their careers. (Full Story)

British Columbia:

July 15, 2011 - B.C. expands cancer benefit coverage for firefighters - Premier Christy Clark announced today the expansion of the firefighters' occupational disease regulation so that firefighters who develop esophageal cancer can more easily qualify for benefits under the Workers Compensation Act. Full-time, volunteer, part-time and paid on-call firefighters who are assigned primarily to fire suppression duties and who have a minimum 25 years of employment doing this work, all qualify for this coverage. (Full Story)

June 17, 2011 - Fast-tracking immigrants leads to jobs, investment - A new, independent evaluation report shows that many success stories are resulting from the B.C. Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP), which provides accelerated permanent resident status to qualified workers and entrepreneurs based on labour market and development priorities. The report notes that from 2005 to mid-2010, a total of 203 entrepreneurs who received permanent resident status through the program invested over $423 million in British Columbia, creating more than 1,100 jobs. (Full Story)

July 8, 2011 - New programs support job training in four B.C. regions - The B.C. government is responding to the need for trained workers in rural B.C. by seeking proposals for industry-specific programs will provide more skilled workers. It's anticipated that B.C. will have one million job openings in the next 10 years, and much of the demand will be in the Interior and northern B.C. (Full Story)

Manitoba:

July 13, 2011 - The Government of Canada helps youth in Dauphin prepare for the job market - Local youth who face barriers to employment will get job preparation training and work experience through the Government of Canada's support for an employment project. With assistance from the federal Skills Link program, the Dauphin & District Chamber of Commerce will provide outreach services to 50 youth facing employment barriers to encourage them to access the community resources they need to find a job or to return to school. (Full Story)

June 29, 2011 - Manitoba Mentors Program To Help Students Move Successfully From School To Work - More than 500 Manitoba high-school students will have an opportunity to explore career options and learn from experts in their prospective fields this year through the province's new Manitoba Mentors program. Students will be matched with employers and individuals who will provide group mentoring, speakers' panels, site visits to employers and businesses, small group discussions and one-to-one mentoring through job shadowing, internships and job placements. (Full Story)

June 11, 2011 - Request for Proposals: Newcomer and Immigrant Worker Projects - The Manitoba WCB in inviting qualified consultants and video production companies to submit a Bid to the WCB to undertake a project comprised of two (2) separate parts. Part 1 will be to produce a video to introduce the WCB to newcomer and immigrant workers in Manitoba. Part 2 will be to develop a network with and distribute the video to organizations involved in the orientation of newcomer and immigrant workers entering the workforce in Manitoba. (Full Story)

New Brunswick:

July 11, 2011 - Provincial, federal governments help unemployed older workers - The provincial and federal governments are jointly funding a $140,000 project to help unemployed older workers in the Minto and Chipman areas. The Targeted Initiative for Older Workers will teach new skills and help these workers find and keep new jobs. As part of the project, 12 unemployed workers 55 to 64 years old will have the opportunity to learn new skills and participate in a work experience component that will help them put these skills into practice. (Full Story)

July 8, 2011 - June unemployment rate up - The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in New Brunswick rose to 9.6 per cent in June, up 0.1 of a percentage point compared to May, according to figures reported today by Statistics Canada. The unemployment rate increased by 0.4 of a percentage point compared to the same month last year. The number of employed New Brunswickers was 349,500 in June, down 1,900 from May and down 4,700 from the same month last year. (Full Story)

June 21, 2011 - Provincial government invests in information and technology jobs - The provincial government is providing a $3.3 million financial package to Innovatia Inc. of Saint John including a $425,000 payroll rebate to create up to 35 jobs; $75,000 to upgrade the information technology infrastructure; and additional working capital through a $2.3 million direct term loan and a $500,000 loan guarantee. (Full Story)

June 10, 2011 - May unemployment rate down compared to last month - The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in New Brunswick fell to 9.5 per cent in May, down 0.5 of a percentage point compared to April, according to figures reported today by Statistics Canada. The unemployment rate increased by 0.5 percentage points compared to the same month last year. The number of employed New Brunswickers was 351,400 in May, down 1,400 from April and down 6,600 from the same month last year. (Full Story)

Newfoundland and Labrador:

July 13, 2011 - Positive Outlook for Provincial Labour Market - Newfoundland and Labrador's historical challenge of too many people and not enough work is now giving way to the new reality of jobs and opportunities. A report was released today titled Newfoundland and Labrador Labour Market Outlook 2020, which provides a forecast of the province's labour market demands for the next decade and outlines the opportunities that will exist in numerous sectors. (Full Story)

June 07, 2011 - Injury rate down, funded position up at Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission - The Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission released its 2010 Annual Performance Report last week, highlighting a decreased injury rate in the province and an improved funded position. The provincial lost-time incidence rate dropped to 1.8 incidents per 100 workers in 2010, the lowest rate in the 60 years the Commission has been collecting workplace injury data. The lost-time incidence rate has been declining steadily from a rate 3.2 injuries per 100 workers a decade ago. (Full Story)

Nova Scotia:

July 8, 2011 - Labour Force Survey Data for June 2011 - Nova Scotia's employment increased by 3,800 jobs from May to June 2011, according to Statistics Canada Labour force survey information released today, July 8. The province's unemployment rate is 8.7 per cent, down from nine per cent the month before. There was an increase of 9,200 in full-time employment which offset part-time job losses of 5,500. Nova Scotia's total labour workforce was 496,000. (Full Story)

July 4, 2011 - Fair, Safe Student Summer Jobs - The province and its partners try to make sure all Nova Scotians understand their rights and responsibilities as protected by laws and regulations. Employees have the right to refuse any unsafe work. This includes being told about any dangers on the job and being given the proper knowledge and equipment to work safely. Last year, 3,665 Nova Scotians younger than 25 reported claims to the Workers' Compensation Board. (Full Story)

Ontario:

July 15, 2011 - Ontario Supports Pharmaceutical Sector, Creates Jobs - With the government's support, Teva Canada Limited is expanding its Stouffville plant and installing state-of-the-art equipment. The upgrades will allow the company to expand its production while creating 20 new jobs and protecting 182 jobs at its Stouffville, Markham and Scarborough plants. (Full Story)

July 15, 2011 - Government of Canada helps post-secondary graduates in Elora gain career-related experience - Post-secondary graduates will get the opportunity to enhance and develop their job skills through the Government of Canada's support for a youth employment project. With assistance from the federal Career Focus program, the Elora Environment Centre will hire two environmental studies graduates as part of its Urban Tree Stewardship project. Additionally, the Centre will receive Canada Summer Jobs funding to hire additional students for the summer. (Full Story)

July 14, 2011 - Ontario's Supports Gaming Industry, Creates 205 New Jobs - Ontario is helping a leading international publisher and developer of downloadable video games to open a new state-of-the-art digital gaming studio in Toronto which will create up to 205 jobs. Partnering with business is a key component of the McGuinty Government's plan to create and support jobs for Ontario families and strengthen local economies. (Full Story)

July 14, 2011 - New Support For Digital Tech Sector Creates 80 Jobs - With the province's support, Silicon Knights - a St. Catharines-based video game company, is developing the best 3D Game Development Engine that will include new advanced camera systems. Investing in local business is a key component of the McGuinty Government's plan to create and support jobs for Ontario families and strengthen local economies. (Full Story)

July 12, 2011 - New Infrastructure, New Jobs, A Stronger Ontario - Ontario has invested in new infrastructure that has created thousands of jobs, improved local communities and made life better for all Ontarians. That is just some of the good news found in Ontario's 2011 Progress Report. The annual report shows the results Ontarians are achieving together. The government's infrastructure investments have helped create and support close to 600,000 jobs since 2003. (Full Story)

June 29, 2011 - WSIB announces premium rates for 2012 - The Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) confirmed today that premium rates for all employer rate groups will increase by two per cent on January 1, 2012. The 2012 average premium rate will be $2.40 per $100 of insurable earnings, an increase from $2.35 in 2011. The 2012 average rate is still well below the $3.00 employers were paying in the mid-'90s. (Full Story)

Prince Edward Island:

July 07, 2011 - Feedback Needed on WCB policy - The Workers Compensation Board has approved in principle changes to the New Evidence (POL-83) policy. They are inviting the public to to provide feedback on this draft policy by August 7, 2011 in the Policy Consultation section of the PEI WCB website. (Full Story)

June 27, 2011 - 2010 Injured Workers Survey Action Plan - Every two years, the WCB conducts a survey with injured workers to find out how we can improve our services. The survey results are then used to develop a plan for action in the key areas identified by their clients. The action plan from the 2010 injured Workers Survey is now available online, outlining the steps we are taking to achieve service excellence. (Full Story - PDF)

June 20, 2011- WCB Online Services are now available for Island employers -
The PEI WCB is committed to continuously improving our services for stakeholders. They are pleased to announce the launch of the first phase of WCB Online Services for employers, providing secure and easy to use web-based services for those who prefer the convenience of online access.
(Full Story)

Saskatchewan:

July 8, 2011 - Saskatchewan's Unemployment Rate Drops, Remains Lowest In Canada - For the fourth consecutive month, Saskatchewan has the lowest unemployment rate in Canada. Saskatchewan's June unemployment rate of 4.9 per cent (seasonally adjusted) was well below the national average of 7.4 per cent. The number of unemployed was down by 3,600 (13.1 per cent) - the third highest percentage decline among provinces. (Full Story)

July 5, 2011 - Saskjobs Tops 13,000 Jobs For Second Straight Month - Saskatchewan employers continue to create job opportunities in huge numbers. The Province's SaskJobs.ca website saw 13,035 job postings in June, a 45 per cent jump over June 2010. Employers from 327 Saskatchewan communities posted opportunities to the site. In the first six months of 2011, Saskatchewan employers posted 67,300 vacancies to the website, an increase of more than 13,000 over the same period in 2010. (Full Story)

June 3, 2011 - Saskjobs Numbers Surge: More Than 13,000 Jobs Posted In May - Employers from across the province have made an emphatic statement about the level of career opportunities available to job seekers in Saskatchewan. The province's www.SaskJobs.ca website saw 13,450 job postings in May, an impressive 53 per cent increase over the same month last year. Employers from 314 Saskatchewan communities posted opportunities to the site. (Full Story)

June 22, 2011 - Saskatchewan's Population Hits New All-Time High - Saskatchewan's population has hit a new all-time record of 1,053,960 as of April 1, 2011, according to the latest estimate released today by Statistics Canada. Saskatchewan grew by 1,910 people in the first quarter of 2011 (January 1, 2011 to April 1, 2011) and by 13,225 people over the past year (April 1, 2010 to April 1, 2011). Saskatchewan's annual growth rate of 1.27 per cent is the fourth highest among the provinces and ahead of the national average growth rate of 1.06 per cent. (Full Story)

Yukon:

July 12, 2011 - Government of Canada helps person with disabilities in Whitehorse develop job skills - A person with disabilities will gain employability skills through the Government of Canada’s support for work experience projects. Mr. Ryan Leef, Member of Parliament for Yukon, made the announcement today on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development. (Full Story)


GrandMaster Update

The current release of GrandMaster Suite (6.21) incorporates a number of changes and important adjustments to make it even easier to use the program and perform your payroll tasks. Some of the program changes include:

  • The July 2011 Federal tax changes included in this release are based on the "Payroll Deductions Formulas for Computer Programs - T4127(E) Rev. 11" document released by the CRA on May 16, 2011. Additionally, employees who have personal exemption amounts that are greater than the federal or provincial base amount for 2011 will need to resubmit personal exemption forms and have these new amounts updated in Payroll Specific Information prior to running a July 2011 pay to take advantage of the tax savings based on the new exemption. The July tax changes are specific to the provinces of MB, NB, NS, and SK. The federal tax formula and the formulas for the remaining provinces have not changed.
  • The option to print Amended or Cancelled T4 Statements added - With this release we have added the option to print Amended or Cancelled T4 statements. The default option will remain as the Original statements however if you are in need to print an Amended or Cancelled statement you now have that option. The new settings will not be saved and are for the current session only meaning that every time you return to the T4 print the program will default back to the Original print option.
  • Support for User specific printer settings added - We have made changes to the User settings, with this release, allowing you to save the printer settings to the current user. This change enables you to have a different printer profile for each of your users. This would be useful when you have users who connect to different printers within the office.
  • Descriptions for additional fields, etc. now included in add employee wizard dialog - Prior to this release when you added new employees to the payroll database using the Add Employee Wizard the Category, Additional Text and Number fields, etc. did not display the descriptions that you may have applied and were using the generic descriptions. This would make it confusing to the user during the add process because you did not know what each of the fields may be representing. Therefore, with this release we have modified the Add Employee Wizard dialog to display the same field descriptions as you would see when displaying the employee's Payroll Specific Information.
  • The Gross to Net export can now export multiple pay sequence data - The Gross to Net export program has been modified to allow you to select a pay range instead of a particular pay sequence. This change allows you to export employee pay data for a range of sequences that displays all the relevant pay data that made up the employee pay calculations by sequence. This change would enable you to pull pay data from the the payroll to a .csv file that would make the Customized Payroll Report unnecessary for reporting employee pay information.
  • New deduction calculation method added for pension related calculations - This release includes a new deduction calculation method (172) similar to calculation method 35 but with separate deduction and benefit parameters that allow you to set rates above and below the YMPE for the deduction and benefit whereby the benefit rates are not reliant on the deduction.
  • You may now import employee permanent tax override settings - We have included in this release the ability to import the employee federal tax calculation setting be it the Normal setting or one of the tax override options. This option is included in the Import Employees process. This change will allow you to import permanent tax overrides to employee records or reset the employee tax calculation to the Normal setting. When importing the federal tax calculation setting your file must include a space for Normal; "X" for Tax Exempt; "F" for Fixed Amount; "%" for Percent of Taxables; and "N" for Net Taxable.
  • QPP "Should Be" shown on T4 Data Report for employees not from Québec - Prior to this release there was a bug of ommission in the T4 Data Report that would result in QPP S/B (Should Be) warnings for employees who were not Québec employees. This release has corrected this bug and non-Québec employees should not have "S/B" references in the T4 Data Report.
  • Conditional Group option added to select CPP/QPP, EI, or QPIP exempt employees - The Payroll Conditional Group option has been enhanced allowing you to include the employee CPP/QPP, EI, or QPIP Exempt settings as a condition for the employee being included or excluded from a group. This could be useful where you may have a number of employees with one of theses settings in use and you want to create a group of the employees based on the setting for payroll or report processing.
  • Option to export the WCB Report added - The Worker's compensation report has been enhanced to allow you to export the report to a file. Option to print or export the EI insurable earnings from the customized payroll report - The customized payroll report used to just allow the option to print or export the EI hours. The option to do the earnings, this is now available.
  • Effective hourly rate added to paystubs and cheque printing - The option of calculating and printing an "effective hourly rate" has been added to the printing of paystubs. This is for clients who pay bonuses etc., where the hourly rate may not be all the employee is being paid. It is a total of gross/EI hours.

• • •

Visit CanPay's News page and view the latest Release Notes for a complete listing of program changes.


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Cutting Payroll Doesn't Always Pay Off
(Part 2 of 2)

Next most important is the analysis of your workforce. Examine the various occupations, skills and experience, your risk for retirement, the nature of diversity in your organization, turnover rates and other trend data. Conduct a supply and demand analysis, identify the gaps and then develop a strategy for overcoming them. Develop a concrete profile of your workforce so that you know where you are in terms of the right number of people with the right skills. Don't forget to look at salaries, retirement eligibility statistics and retirement patterns and hiring patterns.

Once you have prepared a draft plan, you need to ensure there is senior management support and that the necessary resources are allocated to carry out the plan. The roles and responsibilities for implementing the plan must be identified and co-ordination strategies put in place. Time lines are important as are strategies for measuring success. And, of course, putting communication strategies in place is crucial.

As you can expect, implementation will require constant monitoring, evaluation and revision. Our work life changes so quickly that we must continually review what is working and what is not and make ongoing adjustments. As well, the assumptions upon which we made our decisions often change as well and so we must examine these on an annual basis.

One of the key strategies within a workforce planning model is what is called a skill and competency assessment. Competencies are considered "sets of behaviours" that encompass skills, knowledge, abilities, and personal attribute that are critical to successful work accomplishment. Most organizations are now identifying individual competencies, team competencies and organizational competencies.

They then develop a competency model that displays all of the competencies and demonstrates how they are aligned with the organization's mission, vision and strategic goals. These competency maps are extremely helpful in the recruitment and selection process, in career planning and in training and development. Standard questions can be developed for each competency and can be effectively used in the recruitment and selection process. Employees, on the other hand, can readily see what competencies are required for the next job level and can take the appropriate training to develop these skills.

The competencies can be developed by interviewing high performers and learning what they do in their job or through job analysis questionnaires. Typically, we examine not just what people do but how they do their work. These elements are then grouped, classified, defined and prioritized. Once the competencies are developed, they have a long shelf life and can be utilized for years to come.

While workforce planning does take up time and resources, it is a helpful tool for management and organizations to make good human resource decisions. It allows organizations to anticipate change rather than simply react to it. Finally, it allows for the development of strategic methods for addressing workforce issues such as the anticipated retirement of the baby boomer generation.

More importantly, workforce planning allows organizations to ensure that they have the right staffing levels at the right time -- so that profitability can be maximized.

Click Here to view the first part of this article from our previous issue.

Source; the Effect of Labour on Profitability: The role of quality, Zeynep Ton, Harvard Business School, 2008, Workforce Planning guide, State of Texas.

Courtesy of Barbara Bowes - Barbara J. Bowes, FCHRP, CMC, is president of legacy Bowes Group and vice-president of Legacy Executive Search Manitoba. She can be reached at barb@legacybowes.com.