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Why Signing Bonuses Don't Work

Uncategorized Aug 05, 2021

Employers are struggling to find workers and money won’t solve the problem.

I hear in on the radio, read it in the local papers, see it on social media: work here and we’ll give you a signing bonus! 

Here are my top three reasons why this is a poor strategy for most businesses:

  1. Signing bonuses may diminish your workplace culture.

Are they coming because of your team atmosphere, corporate values or just for the cash?  Many new hires right now are coming off a tough time financially and the bonus might cloud their lens in how they evaluate your workplace.  Fit is important. While the thought of a signing bonus might have lured them in, are they the right catch? 

A great way to gauge this is to see what questions they ask you during the interview. Are they asking questions on team dynamics, leadership, development and advancement opportunities or are they more curious as to the logistics of how the bonus comes into play?  For me, even 1 question...

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Six Best Practices for Cost Containment

Uncategorized May 28, 2021

Small businesses are seeing dramatic changes in emerging trends around group benefit plans. While some trends are on the rise, such as virtual healthcare and pharmacy-by-mail, many organizations have also been forced to seek cost-cutting measures, revealing an opportunity to review group benefit plans on a deeper level.

Often times, the knee-jerk reaction is plan design cuts, however cutting costs does not have to mean reducing member coverage. With the right benefits advisor, plan design changes can be one of the last considerations.

Continuum of cost containment

Changes to group benefit plans range from very effective and non-intrusive to those that have the greatest impact on employee satisfaction.

For cost containment, best practice is to aim for actions on the left side of the continuum; those that have the highest potential savings and are the least intrusive to employees. Examples of these include changing to funding models like administrative services only (ASO),...

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How to Power Your Company’s Growth with Compensation Management

compensation Jan 07, 2021


If you do not make use of a proper compensation management software solution, you will watch your competition outgrow you.

The terms “compensation” and “management” taken on their own are essential to the functions of your company in different but interconnected ways. However, by marrying the two terms, you can significantly fuel the growth of your company.

Valued, high performing employees are essential to the healthy ecosystem of your business, and properly implemented compensation practices are the glue that binds those employees to your organization for the long haul.

So why even bother and what is compensation management, to begin with?

What is it? Specialized software that works in conjunction with your company’s processes, policies, and procedures to streamline total compensation for your employees—from personal days, vacation time, benefits, and more.

Why Do it? Maximize returns by rewarding your employees in a timely, organized,...

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The 4 Steps to an Effective Employee Leave Management System

hris Jan 06, 2021

Leave management, it can feel…complicated. The core idea—a defined process that’s consistently used to handle all time-off requests, and to track the time employees are away from work—seems easy enough. But, as every HR professional can attest to, leave management is a process that’s easy in theory, but not necessarily in execution.

The logistical tangles around effectively managing employee away time can create real challenges. Devising effective policies and implementing them can feel like an uphill battle. Leave management requires organization, dedication and understanding, not just from your HR team, but managers and employees as well.

While every organization’s leave management will be designed specific to its needs, there are some core aspects that remain vital to all leave strategies and it’s those essential elements we’ll discuss in this article.

You have a leave management strategy in place, but it’s overly...

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5 Easiest Ways for Business to Save Money in 2021

Uncategorized Nov 30, 2020


With the Pandemic raging on and the economic fallout on the horizon,  for those businesses who can pull through to the other side, 2021 will be a year of saving and reinvesting back into the business.  Here are the 5 ways with an immediate ROI.

#5 Ditch Your High Ticket Benefit Consultants

Benefits aren’t rocket science and you shouldn’t be paying for rocket fuel when there are many great boutique firms (outside of the large consultants) who can deliver far more value for you your employees. there are a good number of us out there adding a tremendous amount of value around well being and financial literacy in addition to insuring your land design is impactful and cost-effective. If you’re consulting fees are more then 8% of your total benefit premiums you can do better.

#4 Renegotiate Your Mobile Phone & Internet Contracts

With a new entrant into the mobile phone space, Shaw is disrupting the internet and mobile phone plans across the...

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Thinking About Getting a Group Plan? Why Evaluating Benefit Premiums is The Last Thing You Want to Do

pricing Oct 07, 2020

Investing into an employee benefits strategy makes good financial sense as it’s a way to commute “income” to an employee on a tax-free basis while helping them maintain their health so they can be productive at work. It’s a classic win-win. However, there is another side to this coin.

Benefit plan premiums generally go up every year. As your employees age, submit more claims, inflation creeps up and practitioners charge more. You’re feel-good-benefits-plan can become a financial annoyance if it’s not set up properly at the onset.

First, know this. The big insurers LOVE to buy new business. Most of the big insurance companies are the big offenders here. Until a group plan has longevity, predictable claims experience, for small businesses; we’re not convinced these carriers are always best aligned for the needs of these types of enterprises in the early days of their benefits plan offering. Sure, some will argue this point and there are...

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How a Canadian HRIS System Can Streamline Your Leave Management Process

hris Sep 01, 2020

Employees expect that managers or HR are tracking their time off. There are instances when they book time off yet they’re not certain if they have the time available to them. 

An HRIS can help you and your employees keep track of how much time someone has accrued and how much time they’ve used. Many HRIS’ include employee self service modules, which means your employees can keep track of their vacation and leave accruals, as well as monitor how many days off they have left.

Employees who can easily access their leave information through a self-service platform tend to be more mindful of their time off requests. Self-service also makes it easy for employees to see how much time is available to them (meaning managers and HR are not bombarded with questions about leave).

Automate How You Track Employee Leaves Offer More Effective Scheduling

One major challenge—particularly when dealing with vacation requests—is that many employees will request the...

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The Most Overlooked Employee Benefits Cost is That of Benefits Management Itself!

Uncategorized Aug 17, 2020

One of the most overlooked healthcare costs is that of benefits management itself. Paper-based enrolment forms are frustratingly complicated, prone to errors, and a major drain on HR resources. But thanks to modern benefits solutions, they’re also becoming obsolete.

Putting pen to paper to fill multiple pages of enrolment forms is a painful experience for plan members – especially the younger generation – and plan administrators, who have to chase employees to get the forms back, decipher handwriting, then transfer the information into an admin portal, which is not always user-friendly.

Automating group benefits management means more than just convenience; it can reduce costly information errors by up to 30%, and save countless hours sifting through spreadsheets and paper forms. It’s a sound solution to mitigating risks related to the handling of sensitive personal data required from group benefits plan members.

While many Canadians still depend on paper...

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Return to Work Preparation – A 360 Degree Approach

Uncategorized Aug 10, 2020

As businesses across Canada prepare to reopen, employees may feel apprehensive. Many employees will be relieved to be back at work but have concerns about how to maintain physical distancing and work safely through this transition period.

While most employers are evaluating the physical workplace to determine how to keep employees safe, addressing employee anxiety and workplace mental health are important considerations. Many employees report symptoms of anxiety and even panic when thinking about the return to work. A majority of Canadians (83%) say that mental and physical health are equally important during this time.*

What can employers do during this unprecedented return to work? Take a 360-degree view, and consider all aspects of employee health and safety. Organizations need to ensure they have taken into account employees’ emotional need for confidence in the return to the work plan. There needs to be a process and mechanism for hearing and considering employees...

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Understanding Capital Accumulation Plan (CAP) Guidelines

Uncategorized Aug 03, 2020

Did you know that the CAP guidelines were enacted by the Joint Forum of Financial Market Regulators in 2004? I’m amazed at the number of businesses I meet that are not really sure about what this means to them.

If you are an employer and you have a Defined Contribution Pension Plan, group RRSP plan, group RESP plan or a deferred profit-sharing plan, then you have a set of responsibilities under the Capital Accumulation Plan Guidelines.

According to the 18-page document put together by the regulators, employers have a new set of responsibilities. Here is a summary of the requirements broken down into four key themes: Governance, Communication, Process and Documentation.

Governance – A strategy document.

One of the themes of the CAP guidelines is the theme of governance. Generally speaking, the plan sponsor or employer is required to outline the criteria for establishing the plan, the service provider and the investments being offered through the plan. The best...

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