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Sourcing Canada’s Tech Talent Without the High Cost of Contract or Freelance Developers and Engineers Through EOR / PEO specialists

Many companies seek to enhance technological, engineering and software development through contractual or freelance talent to access Canada’s well-known pool of technology experts. Canada is equally well known for engineering depth and technology expertise in the gas and energy fields. Yet is this a cost-effective solution to engaging technology, engineeering or developer talent? While independent contractors allow businesses to expand technical expertise and reduce costs, they come with their own set of issues; onboarding headaches, contract values —which can escalate with quality control and checks — and specific contractors who aren’t always available precisely when needed to manage deadlines. There’s also the issue of client support for technology.

While Canada offers a diverse talent pool and a stable economic environment — rated among the best in the world (see this report>>) —  it is more cost-effective to hire employees than contractual labour. With the Canadian to US dollar exchange, the top talent in Canada is a “relative bargain.” Since the Canadian regulatory environment is substantially different from the U.S. environment, particularly in the areas of human resource management regulations, termination rules and payroll, one of the proven ways to ramp up quickly with Canadian talent is to use an EOR or PEO in Canada.

An employer of record (EOR) organization can help companies benefit from a direct employer-employee relationship with the talent, while managing the burden of a new regulatory environment.


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Canada offers among the top talent in the world for engineering, oil and gas industry expertise, technology and software development. With the Canadian dollar exchange it can be very attractive for US companies to expand into Canada.


Canada’s tech talent — among the best in the world

Canada may not be the first country that comes to mind when a business is wondering where to hire tech talent from. Perhaps it’s the U.S.A., where minds such as Bill Gates and Donald Knuth are. Then again, there’s India which boasts the fastest-growing concentration of developers in the world and offers extremely competitive prices due to exchange rates. Alongside these options is Russia, whose hackers are quite infamous.

Yet, according to data from HackerRank, in terms of technical skills in algorithms, Java, data structures, and AI, the U.S.A. ranks 28th while India comes in at 31st. [1]

China and Russia are top scorers, but many companies are reluctant to hire talent from these countries for a variety of reasons. Political differences, time differences, and possible language barriers are just some examples.

An unassuming but strong contender for offering excellent tech talent at a reasonable price is Canada. In at number 21 and just above South Korea, Canadian tech talent scored 81.7 on HackerRank’s index. Yet, expanding into Canada to hire the talent there would incur large costs. How can companies quickly build up a team of Canadian experts with the lowest possible expenditure?

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The reality of hiring tech talent in Canada

Hiring Canadian experts is an excellent idea, and from the point of view of base cost, it’s a solid one, with the Canadian dollar exchange weak compared to the US currency. If a company bypasses the more expensive freelancer or contact method, there are some downsides in terms of regulatory diffrences, which can seem intimidating.

Despite this, with all of salaries, benefits, and paid sick days added together, there is still a major cost advantage to hiring Canadian talent in Canada. There are also many hidden costs that can arise. Even with these costs, it’s generally cost-effective for U.S. companies after exchange.

For example, Canadian laws mandate that employers match the Employment Insurance and Canada Pension Plan contributions of their employees. This mandated contribution-matching is an excellent example of the need for localized knowledge; non-Canadian employers will have to do their due diligence when researching Canadian laws and procedures to ensure that they’re compliant when employing and paying local talent.

Of course, to even hire local talent in the first place, a company would have to have a Canadian branch, which in itself is a massive undertaking.

Due to these and many other complexities, companies turn to EOR, also known as Employer of Record, or alternately a full-service PEO acting in a similar capacity. The key difference is in who employs the actual employee. With an EOR, you retain control over your team, but the EOR is the technical employer in Canada. This bypasses the need for infrastructure, incorporation in Canada, and regulatory compliance, while giving you immediate access to Canadian talent.


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The benefits of having an EOR or PEO in Canada

An employer of record like Pivotal HR Solutions is a third-party organization that acts as the local representative for a company, assuming all their employer-related responsibilities as the full legal employer of their workforce in that country.

An EOR handles the specifics of employment so that businesses can leverage Canadian tech experts’ talent without any headaches.

Working with an EOR in Canada offers a company many benefits.

  1. Low costs (USD vs. CAD)

An EOR enables companies to hire talent local to a country without necessarily opening a branch in that country. Employees enjoy all the benefits of being an employee while the employer enjoys a larger talent pool.

The cost-effectiveness of this solution extends further however, as the Canadian dollar is weaker than the U.S. dollar, meaning that businesses that deal in USD will find working with an EOR in Canada far more affordable.


  1. Excellent talent-to-cost ratio

These comparatively low costs also exist in an excellent ratio with the talent available. Ranking higher than countries such as the U.S.A. and the United Kingdom, Canada’s talent is impressive.

Countries such as India and Chile may offer very competitive prices but ranked around ten places lower than Canada in HackerRank’s results, so it’s easy to see that Canada is uniquely poised to offer companies an excellent talent-to-cost ratio.


  1. Accessible

For companies from countries such as Australia, New Zealand, the U.K. and the U.S.A., Canada is an excellent choice.

Hiring Canadian talent doesn’t come with the same concerns that hiring from countries such as Russia or China does. It’s an extremely accessible, high-quality talent pool without the costs and barriers that other talent pools may have.


Pivotal EOR and PEO Services

The first step in finding the right Canadian tech talent is to understand the Canadian tech landscape. Choosing a local partner with an excellent reputation and sound knowledge of Canada’s multi-lingual, multicultural landscape is key.

Pivotal HR Solutions is proud to possess both. With decades of experience, we utilize our special, personalized approach to help companies navigate Canada’s unique market and make the most of its talent.

We empower companies to be able to forego learning the logistical, legal, and financial intricacies of a foreign market. We expertly handle all of their local employment needs, from benefits to training and payroll.

If you’re interested in a seamless, efficient, and easy collaboration with a Canadian EOR, then we’re here to help. Please contact us here so that we can begin our partnership.


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Hacker Rank rates Canada>>

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