Entrepreneurship & Small Business

Cost of an employee

  • Last Updated:
  • May 16th, 2022 10:37 am
Oct 27, 2013
343 posts

Cost of an employee

Can someone tell me what the true total cost would be if I hired an employee whose salary is $85k per year or about $45/hr.

WSIB, EI, health tax, etc.

3 replies
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Dec 16, 2015
5216 posts
Distance: 50 Metres
Put 1.5 hrs work into 1 hr and you can get more out of your $ for your employee
To the moon
Deal Fanatic
Jan 21, 2018
9311 posts
You can work out the details yourself for your province and your company, but 1.4x salary is a typical rough guideline.
Deal Addict
Aug 28, 2007
2148 posts
I wouldn't disagree with Scote64 for a ballpark of 40%. It varies considerably depending on a number of factors like your personal generosity towards your employees, your industry, type of employee, unions, the economy of the day, and so forth. In the 1980's, we used a 30% burden as a rough average. However, that was the decade after the inflationary runup... we're in the decade before the run-up.

If your decision is close to an affordability tipping point, you may want to do a quick itemized spreadsheet study specific to your own circumstances. Most of the costs can be investigated easily to get your own number. CPP and EI are very specific. Worker's Comp (if needed) is predictable. Provincial fees like a health premium are easy to find. Individual employee benefits is where it gets variable. Your starting point of $85K means you have a somewhat skilled & trained employee, so you'll have expectations from that employee for a bare minimum based on market competition. There are benefits I believe are morally obligatory juxtaposed to behaviour of some very ruthless or nasty employers. There are also some you'll ethically support on a personal level. And some just reflect your personal belief in truly looking after your employees for life not just using them until they are worn out & discarded. Finally, the providers of each of those benefit services vary widely... some of them are ruthless in the fees you pay versus the value provided to your employee.

In my startup days, there were lots of people I needed/wanted to hire but couldn't afford them at first. That meant I had to do their tasks manually myself until we grew enough gross profit to hire them. I suppose that is why entrepreneurs work such long hours in the early days.