Hours of work
Employers located in Alberta are bound by specific rules and guidelines defined by the Government of Alberta. If you are applying for a position in Alberta, the employer is subject to the laws outlined by Alberta Employment Standards. The Alberta Employment Standards outline how many hours employees can work in a day, when they can take breaks, what happens when an employee works overtime, and any other situation that would require an employees’ time at work.
Review the following Government of Alberta information on hours of work and potential exceptions:
If you are looking for a job outside of Alberta, we encourage you to research the area’s employment standards, and to look on government websites.
You will typically sign a contract before starting a job. The contract may include start dates, end dates (if applicable), compensation, and other key details of your employment. Ensure you read the contract in full before signing as some organizations include contractual obligations around your job training and may require compensation if you break the contract.
If you are uncertain on how to navigate the terms of a contract and what your and the employer's responsibilities are, the following resources can help:
Employee or contractor
Employees are individuals hired to work within an organization. Contractors, also known as freelancers or consultants, are individuals hired by an organization to complete a specific project and may not continue the working relationship once the project has been completed. There are various definitions, exceptions, and pay structures that accompany contract work.
Access the following information to learn more about working as a contractor in Alberta:
Is a job posting legitimate?
The following resources can help you determine if a job posting is legitimate or part of a popular job scam:
An employer can choose to pay an employee based on various pay structures. The most common are hourly, salary, by commission, or a combination.
The following provides a general breakdown of payment options an employer may follow when paying employees:
- Hourly: set amount per hour worked.
- Salary: set amount, usually bi-weekly or monthly, for a specific amount of hours per week.
- Commission: per product or service sold, however, in Alberta employers must pay an employee at least the minimum wage.
- Commission plus base: base salary plus per product or service sold.
Some employers may choose to pay their employees through a combination of both hourly or salary and commission based pay. In these roles, it is important to ensure your overall pay meets minimum wage.
For more information on wages, benefits, and holiday pay in Alberta, review the following Government of Alberta resources:
Direct selling methods
Some organizations use methods to directly sell their products and services outside of traditional retail environments. Direct selling involves the sale of products and services to consumers in a non-retail environment.
The following are examples on how direct sales can take place:
- Between individuals (e.g. door-to-door, doing presentations)
- At hosting events (e.g. a representative facilitates a presentation at someone’s home)
- Through multi-level marketing (e.g. individual or party presentations, catalogs, online stores, etc.)
While multi-level marketing is a legal business model, pyramid selling schemes are not. Pyramid selling schemes are a type of multi-level marketing plan that largely profit from recruiting others to sell rather than the actual sale of products or services.
For more information on how pyramid schemes and multi-level marketing plans differ, check out the resources below: