Alberta Minimum Wage Increases: Everything You Need to Know

As always, to make sure your business is prepared and stays in compliance, we recommend that you discuss these upcoming changes to the Alberta minimum wage with your accountant and lawyer. This article does not constitute legal advice.

What is the minimum wage in Alberta for 2023?

As of April 1, 2023, Alberta’s general minimum wage is $15.00 per hour for most employees, which is $1.65 less than the current federal minimum wage. However, the federal minimum wage in Canada only applies to employees working in industries regulated by the government, such as banking and transportation. Provinces set the minimum wage for all other industries. Alberta’s $15.00 minimum wage became effective on October 1, 2018. However, there are exceptions and other considerations:

  • Students under 18 For students under 18, the minimum wage is $13.00 for the first 28 hours they work in a week during the school year. Beyond 28 hours, the student must be paid $15 per hour, and overtime hours must follow applicable rules.
  • Salespersons (land agents and other professionals) must receive a weekly wage of $598 as of June 26, 2019.
  • Domestic employees who live with their employer must receive a monthly wage of at least $2,848 as of June 26, 2019. Domestic employees who do not reside in their employer’s home must receive the general minimum wage of $15.

Is the minimum wage going up in Alberta?

Any updates to Alberta’s minimum wage legislation will be reflected in the Employment Standards Code. To stay up to date on current employment laws and regulations, you can sign up for updates.

Square Online

Turn any business into an online business with a free eCommerce website.

Will Alberta raise its minimum wage in 2023 and beyond?

The province of Alberta does not currently have plans to increase the minimum wage as of April 2023.

How should small business owners prepare for changes?

Minimum wage increases are great news for employees but not necessarily for business owners. If you’re worried about how upcoming changes might affect your business finances:

  • Audit your expenses: Check your cash flow in detail to ensure you avoid common business mistakes and create a hiring plan that you can afford. In some cases, you may find that hiring temporary workers as needed is less expensive than taking on full-time regular staff.

  • Make sure you hire and keep the right employees: Replacing an employee costs a lot. You decrease the total cost associated with recruiting by retaining valuable employees. Look for candidates who have good track records, come recommended, and fit in with the company culture. Once they’re onboarded, make sure you build a relationship and provide paths for your employees to grow and thrive; it makes it more likely they’ll stay in their roles.

  • Increase prices: Increasing prices is a great way to boost your cash flow. According to Square’s 2023 Future of Retail report, given the current economic climate, 88% of consumers say they’d understand if their favourite local business raised its prices.

  • Update tech: Consider automating certain aspects of the work and find ways to reduce production costs. Investing in small business team management software can help free up your time, better schedule your employees, and, best of all, is easy to learn.

Square is here to help you with any resources you need, so you and your business can thrive.