From June to July 2015, provincial accounting bodies and CPA Canada conducted a compensation survey of Canadian Professional Accountants.
Click on the links below to access the reports.
British Columbia (English)
- Findings from the 2015 Member Compensation Study (which reviews self-reported 2014 compensation figures provided by members of the CPA profession) reveal that holding the CPA designation is quite lucrative with an average annual compensation of $151K, and a median compensation of $108K among members.
- Compared to compensation levels reported in 2012, mean compensation increased by approximately 7% in 2014 with median compensation showing an increase of 3%. For reference, mean compensation in 2012 was $141K, while the median was $105K.
- From a provincial standpoint, average compensation among all members was highest in Alberta ($184K), followed by Ontario ($150K), and Saskatchewan ($146K). Average compensation was also above average in both the Northwest Territories ($204K) and Nunavut ($181K). However, compensation results for members in the territories should be interpreted with caution due to small sample sizes.
- In cities with at least 100 members, mean compensation in 2014 was highest for those living in Calgary, Edmonton and Toronto ($196K, $167K and $167K, respectively).
- That said, it is much more lucrative for CPAs to work internationally with average compensation figures for 2014 at $284K (vs. $146K nationally). Focusing on individual counties, members based out of the Cayman Islands, Singapore, Hong Kong, United Arab Emirates and the United States are averaging over $320K. Interestingly, Members working internationally only had one more year of work experience (on average) compared to those working within Canada.
- Members working in the Mining, Holding and Conglomerate and Oil and Gas industries reported the highest mean compensation overall ($227K, $223K and $212K, respectively). This is consistent with compensation reported in 2012 where the same three industries received the highest mean compensation.
- Industries with the highest median compensation gain (based on the percentage increase between 2012 and 2014) include Pharmaceuticals and Chemicals (+20% over 2012) and Hotels and Restaurants/Food services (+11% over 2012).
- Looking ahead, the majority of members expect their compensation to increase in 2015 with the exception of those in the Oil & Gas sector where less than half (45%) of members expect an increase over the next 12 months. More than one in five members in the Oil & Gas industry also expect a decrease (21%), the highest among all the industries.
- Approximately one-in-ten professional accountants reported owning a business in 2014. The majority of these members owned accounting firms while the rest owned another form of business. In terms of monetary incentives, it is most financially rewarding to be an owner of a non-accounting based firm as average compensation was $316K in 2014. Comparatively, owners of accounting firms earned $211K on average with Sole Practitioners earning $136K and partners earning $276K in 2014.
- On average, non-owners earned $141K in 2014, of which, $115K was attributed to their base compensation (i.e. salary) while $36K came from Non-Base Compensation. Overall, non-base compensation was driven by bonuses with over half (55%) of members receiving this type of compensation.
- Among non-owners, the highest mean compensation goes to members who spend the majority of their time on Investments, Management/General Management, Strategy & Governance, Operations and Business Development/Management.
- Not surprisingly, professional accountants with the titles of President/CEO and Senior Vice President earned the highest overall compensation in 2014 (each receiving $402K and $397K, respectively).
If you have any questions regarding the compensation survey, please direct them to Paul Long (firstname.lastname@example.org).