Hiring Your First Employee – Parting Ways

It happens to every business owner: at some point, one of your employees will leave or you may even choose to part ways with an employee through termination. 

It isn’t fun to think about the possibility of losing an employee no matter the reason – but it’s imperative to be prepared for when these situations inevitably arise. 

A sound off-boarding process is crucial to the well-being of your business – it is an important step when transitioning your employee out of your business. With a proper off-boarding process, you can maintain a positive relationship with your former employee while gathering honest insights and feedback. 

Along with off-boarding, you’ll also be responsible for filing a Record of Employment (ROE) for your former employee – as such, we’ll be covering both off-boarding and how to file an ROE in this post. 

What is Off-boarding? 

Off-boarding is the process of separating an employee from your business, whether that’s through termination or resignation (or even retirement). 

It might be emotional, depending on circumstances, but off-boarding doesn’t have to be contentious — it can be a great opportunity to hear your employee’s perspective, clear out any misunderstandings, and hopefully keep connections open and healthy.  

What Happens During The Off-boarding Process? 

Typically, an off-boarding checklist will include: 

  • Conducting an exit interview 
  • Changing the passwords to any accounts, or revoking access rights 
  • Collecting any equipment used for the role 

During the entirety of the process, you’ll need to consider the employee’s responsibilities within the business, and how those will be carried going forward — whether that’s taking those duties on yourself, handing them to another current employee, or finding and training a replacement for the role.  

Effective Exit Interview Questions

It might feel somewhat uncomfortable, given the circumstances, but an exit interview provides you with a great opportunity as a business owner: you’ll get honest insights you might not have gathered from your employee otherwise. 

Here are some sample questions you might want to include in your exit interviews: 

  • Why are you leaving?  
  • Did you have everything to do your job well? 
  • Could I have done anything different to keep you? 
  • How would you describe working here? 
  • What was the best part of the job? Worst part? 
  • Would you think about working here again? 

The answers might not always be what you want to hear, but if you stay objective and aim to have an engaged conversation, you’ll receive a ton of useful information and advice to implement in the future. 

What About Benefits Coverage? 

If you had offered extended benefits to your employee, like health insurance, those benefits end on the employee’s last day of work.  

If you want to extend coverage for certain benefits, as part of a severance agreement for instance, most insurance companies will provide an extension in a benefits plan for a period of time. 

If your employee accrued vacation time, they’ll also be entitled to that on their last payment. 

What Is a Record of Employment? 

A ROE is a form you’ll need to complete when your employee leaves your company. It contains details about the employee’s work history, including earnings where EI (Employment Insurance) was deducted. 

How Do I Send an ROE to Service Canada?

Like T4s, you can send an ROE either online or by paper.  

If you choose to submit online, check your payroll software first, as some payroll systems include an option to upload an ROE directly to Service Canada. Otherwise, you can submit your ROE directly through the Service Canada website, or through another third-party payroll provider. 

If you’re looking for a robust service that makes payroll fast, easy, and seamless, check out PaymentEvolution’s Payroll.  

You will not need to provide a copy to your employee if you file online, but you’ll need to keep the information for your own records.  

If you choose to file a paper ROE, you’ll need three copies: one for the employee, one for your own records, and one that is mailed to Service Canada. You can find the mailing address, and more information on ROEs, here.  

Is there a deadline for issuing an ROE? 

Yes there is — and it depends on how you file. 

If you’re filing online, the deadline to file the ROE is five days after the end of the pay period (weekly, biweekly, or semi-monthly) of the employee’s last day. 

If your pay period is monthly, the ROE deadline is either five days after the last pay period, or 15 days after the last day worked, whichever is earlier. 

When filing a paper ROE, the deadline is within five days after the employee’s last day.  

Do I have to keep a record of ROEs? 

Yes — whether you filed online or a paper copy, you will need to keep all payroll records for six years. 

Termination and off-boarding are an inevitable part of being an employer. In order to make the most of your off-boarding process, it’s important to do your research and align your processes accordingly. 

If you’re looking for a comprehensive system that can help you align your processes, check out PaymentEvolution. No matter your business needs, PayEvo has your back when it comes to providing your employees with exceptional human resources.