In Canada, the average salary for accounting jobs can vary based on factors such as your specific role and the city that you reside. However, salaries can be quite high and many positions have opportunities for advancement over time.
As well, accountants are in demand across Canada and this will also influence salaries. For immigrants to Canada, this can be a benefit as companies will look to recruit new employees from around the world.
So, using data supplied by the Government of Canada, we’ll look at the potential salary for accounting jobs using the National Occupational Classification (NOC) code for Financial Accountants (1111). The NOC is used to classify different occupations in Canada. You can find the NOC code that best describes your experience to gain more information about your occupation.
While these figures show an average wage per hour, this will vary based on the following factors:
1.Your specific accounting role and specialization (for example payroll; taxation; auditing; etc.)
2.Your level of experience, education, and designations you hold
3. The job outlook for accounting and finance jobs
4. Provincial and regional labour market conditions
To understand what you can expect to earn, it’s important to research all of these factors. Your research will give you a better understanding of the salary ranges. This information will also be helpful when you apply for jobs in Canada and negotiate your salary.
Four factors that determine the average salary for accounting jobs:
1. Accounting role
The national median wage per hour for an accountant in Canada (NOC 1111) ranges from $19.50/hour at the low end, to $57.60/hour at the high end. However, this is a national average. So, make sure to research the provincial wage per hour as well. You may find that some provinces pay higher than the national average based on the demand for accountants, and the labour supply within the local market.
As well, you can explore other titles that are related to the accounting NOC. For example, common titles within this NOC category include:
Additional compensation for accounting jobs in Canada
In addition to a yearly salary, you can expect to receive a benefits package from your employer. Most employers offer accountants a generous benefits package as part of a total compensation package.
These benefits may include things such as:
- Dental insurance
- Supplemental medical insurance
- Short-term and long-term disability insurance
- Pension plan for your retirement
- Bonus pay
- Stock options
- And other incentives.
With these additional benefits, an average salary for accounting jobs in Canada is very rewarding.
2. Level of experience
Based on your experience from another country, your starting salary may be higher. And, you may get an increase in pay if you have a sought after designation such as the Certified Professional Accountant (CPA).
To give you an idea of the payscale, the Government of Canada provides wage information for the industry. The data shows the Low, Median, and High pay scale for accounting and finance jobs in Canada. But, these figures are national averages, and wages will vary at the provincial and regional level. And, based on demand, you may find accounting jobs that pay well above the national average.
Once again, it’s important to conduct your own research to get a clear picture of what you can expect to make in Canada.
3. Job outlook for accounting jobs in Canada
Accountants are in demand around the world, and that’s also the case in Canada. By the year 2024, it’s expected that one in five workers in Canada will retire. So, this high retirement rate will contribute to the demand for accounting professionals.
In addition, there will also be a high growth in the accounting occupation. As the business environment becomes more complex, there will be a need for accountants with strong advisory and analytical skills. Advisory skills will be essential especially when more jobs become automated. And, analytical skills will be very attractive to Canadian employers.
4. Local market conditions
While there is a demand for accountants across Canada, it’s important to know where the need for accountants is strongest. For example, you can explore which provinces or territories may have a higher demand. And, within the province or territory, you can find out which regions and cities have a demand. With this information, you’ll be able to identify cities in Canada that you may possibly want to live in.
By way of example, we’ll look at labour market conditions for accountants using Government of Canada data. The information reveals that the job outlook is rated as Good in several provinces:
Based on this data, job opportunities range from fair to good right across the country. So, this is great news for accountants looking for employment in Canada.
Accountants may gravitate to a large city such as Toronto, as it is considered the financial capital of Canada. However, you may also want to consider other provinces and smaller cities where the outlook for accounting jobs is also good.
For example, provinces such as New Brunswick and Nova Scotia also have a Good job outlook. We’ll look at New Brunswick more closely.
Regional outlook: Within New Brunswick, several regions also show a good outlook for job prospects including Fredericton-Oromocto.
You’ll need to weigh other factors that may be important to you and your family when choosing a city. For example:
- Do you prefer to live in a large city or a smaller city?
- What quality of life factors are critical to you?
- What is the cost of living in the cities you’re considering?
While salaries may be lower in a smaller city, the cost of living can be substantially less than in a large city such as Toronto.
It’s important to know what you can expect to make as an accountant in Canada. When you have an idea of an average salary for accounting jobs in Canada you’ll know if you’re being offered a fair market rate for your skills and experience.