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Research Personnel - Employment and Awards

This resource is intended to assist VIU faculty, researchers, supervisors and staff involved in the various aspects of hiring and appointment creation for research employment.

This is a guide for research-related activities only, which are usually grant-funded and temporary in nature. For regular, ongoing positions and/or those within one of VIU's employee affiliations (VIUFA, BCGEU, CUPE, ADMIN), please contact the Human Resources Office . For student Work-Op funded positions, contact the Centre for Experiential Learning.

If you are unclear whether your particular situation qualifies as research-related activity, please consult with Scholarship, Research, and Creative Activity staff for guidance.

Research Personnel

Suggested Pay Ranges

Employer Costs
Research Employment/Award Matrix
Research Employment/Award Payment Request Form
Research Forms and Resources


If you need to recruit for your research project, there are two advertising options available to you:

  1. Centre for Experiential Learning – Employment opportunities for VIU students (undergraduate and master's students only) can be advertised on the CEL website and are accessible to all VIU students.  Email for further information and instructions. 
  2. Human Resources – If you have an employment opportunity that’s available to anyone with the right qualifications, forward the job duties, required qualifications, preferred qualifications, and pay rate to  A template will be created for the position which will enable it to be advertised on the VIU HR Employment Postings webpage.

If you want to restrict your advertising to only VIU students (undergraduate and master's students), advertise on the Centre for Experiential Learning site.  If you want to draw from a broader pool of applicants, advertise on both sites.  If you want to recruit a doctoral student or postdoctoral fellow, advertise only on the Human Resources site as VIU does not currently offer doctoral programs.

Suggested Pay Ranges

The pay rate should be set according to the approved project budget or be based on the qualifications and experience of the employee and the level of complexity of the position. The following pay ranges are provided as suggestions only.

On September 15, 2017, the BC minimum wage rate changed to $11.35 per hour.


2016 Suggested Rates


Without Mandatory   Employer Contributions With Mandatory Employer Contributions (Vacation, CPP, EI, WCB)
Minimum Maximum  Minimum Maximum 
Undergraduate Student $11.35/hour $18.00/hour $12.75/hour $20.22/hour
Masters Student $11.35/hour


Doctoral Student $12.00/hour
Postdoctoral Fellow $31,000/year $60,000/year $33,480/year $64,800/year
Project Personnel $11.35/hour $35.00/hour $12.75/hour $39.31/hour


Employer Costs

Mandatory Statutory Contributions

In addition to the hourly or yearly pay, mandatory employer contributions will apply (Canada Pension Plan, Employment Insurance, Workers' Compensation Board). This means the budget holder will have to pay these costs which total approximately 8% (see table below). In addition, a minimum of 4% must be paid in lieu of vacation and statutory holidays (unless vacation time is accrued resulting in time off with pay), so overall you will need to budget 12% for these costs.

Vacation 4.00%
Canada Pension Plan 4.95%
Employment Insurance 2.324%
Workers' Compensation Board 0.38%


Pension Contributions

Employer contributions will apply where enrollment in the Municipal Pension Plan (MPP) is, or becomes, mandatory. If enrollment in the MPP applies (see guidelines below), you will need to budget an additional 10.06% for approximately 22% for mandatory employer costs.

Municipal Pension Plan (MPP) 9.78%

Mandatory Enrollment:

  • employees who are not permanent but who are employed on a continuous*, full-time basis with the same employer for 12 months,
  • employees who are not full-time but who fill a permanent, full-time position on a temporary, continuous* basis for 12 months,
  • new employees who are already contributing to the plan through another Municipal Pension Plan employer,
  • existing employees who start contributing to the plan through another Municipal Pension Plan employer,
  • new employees who were contributing to the plan through any Plan employer with a break in service of less than one month and the employee has not applied for a pension.

Optional Enrollment:

  • Employees employed on a continuous* basis (including part-time or temporary staff) who have completed two years of continuous* employment and earned at least 35 per cent of Canada Pension Plan’s Year’s Maximum Pensionable Earnings (YMPE) in each of two consecutive calendar years.
* An employee is employed on a “continuous” basis if there are no breaks (lay-offs) in employment greater than 26 weeks and no termination of employment.


Health and Welfare Benefits

Postdoctoral Fellows and Project Personnel may be eligible for employer-paid health benefits.  If an appointment is at least 5 months duration and 17.5 hpw (or 35 hours bi-weekly), these employees are eligible for employer-paid Medical Services Plan (MSP), Extended Health, and Dental benefits.  If the appointment is at least 10 months duration and 35 hours bi-weekly, employees are also eligible for Life Insurance and Accidental Death & Dismemberment (AD&D).  Postdoctoral Fellows and Project Personnel are not eligible for Short- or Long-Term Disability.  Enrollment is voluntary, but where applicable, employer costs are:

Effective July 1, 2017












Extended Health





0.015/$1,000 salary

Group Life Insurance

0.162/$1,000 salary

There is at least a one month waiting period for MSP, Dental, Group Life and AD&D. Benefit coverage commences on the 1st of the month following one complete calendar month from date of employment or eligibility (e.g. if start May 1, will be eligible June 1, but if start May 5, coverage will start July 1.)  Extended Health coverage commences on the first of the month following the date of employment or eligibility.

If you require assistance in determining Municipal Pension Plan or Health & Welfare Benefits eligibility, please consult with Human Resources.

Use this Wage Compensation Costing Worksheet to calculate total pay (base rate, vacation, mandatory employer contributions, and pension, if applicable).

Research Employment/Award Matrix

The next step is to review the Research Employment Matrix to determine how to pay the employee/student. The Matrix outlines all the possible scenarios, depending on the employee's status (student or other), and whether the payment is salary, an internship, scholarship, research grant, etc. The Matrix also identifies the steps required to initiate the payment or appointment.


Research Employment/Award Payment Request Form

In most instances you will use the Research Employment Payment Request Form to arrange for the appointment. Processing instructions are included on the form at the bottom of page 2.

If you have questions on a research employment or award scenario, please consult with Shelley Lumsden in the Scholarship, Research, and Creative Activity Office. There are many variables, so ensuring the correct action at the outset will result in a quicker turnaround.

Research Forms and Resources

For timesheets and other related payroll forms (direct deposit instruction, CRA tax forms, etc.), see the Payroll website.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The above information is subject to change and updates without notice; therefore, it is recommended you bookmark this page and download the linked forms and reference material on an as needed basis. Requests submitted on out-of-date forms may be subject to processing delays.

Updated: January 24, 2018