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Payroll managers oversee the payroll function in businesses and organizations and help develop and implement company payroll and benefit policies. Your position involves working with and managing payroll employees and other HR professionals to ensure company pay is administered accurately and on time.
Payroll managers work in an office environments where they oversee the work of employees in the payroll department. In larger companies, some potential functions such as compensation and benefits administration are split among managers. In smaller companies, the payroll manager might play a more hands-on role in preparing payroll. You can expect to work standard office hours, and you will report to a senior HR or finance leader, depending your company's structure.
With a number of years of experience in accounting already under your belt, moving up to payroll manager allows you to start your role at a competitive salary range. At the low end, you can expect a starting salary of about $60,000, and you could make up to $70,000 to start. With 7 or more years of experience in your role, you can make over $100,000 annually. Factors such as your specific job title, roles and responsibilities, as well as where you are located can have an impact on your salary.
Payroll managers ensure compensation is administered according to company policy and employment law. The payroll manager verifies the accuracy of payroll processing, tax payments, and other tasks performed by clerks or supervisors as well as interpreting payroll statistical reports. Some of day-to-day tasks payroll managers deal with include:
All companies require a payroll manager to process pay and benefits. There are payroll manager opportunities across Canada, however, there are more positions available in larger cities such as Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, and other provincial capital cities.
Payroll managers are numbers people. They need to have mathematics, economics, and accounting skills at the very minimum. Payroll manager positions require accounting expertise, an excellent grasp of payroll principles, problem-solving and decision-making skills, and a thorough understanding of compensation and tax law. You’ll need the following skillset to be successful:
Some payroll managers may move up through the ranks with only a high school diploma, but most positions require at least a college degree in accounting, business administration, human resources, or a related area. Experience in a previous payroll function, with a job history of increasing responsibility, is usually required for payroll managers to be considered for a management positions, especially with larger organizations.
Payroll managers are experienced with accounting principles, as well as laws pertaining to compensation. Certification from the Canadian Payroll Association is preferred for those who want mobility in the payroll field. Fluency in both French and English is an asset. Additional professional training and accounting certification will give you an advantage over other candidates.
Payroll Managers can reach upper management status in human resources with experience. Many also go on to specialize further in HR areas such as benefits, compensation, or compliance.