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Doing business in Finland: Staff welfare

27 March 2012
by Ina Dimireva -- last modified 30 March 2012

The Ministry of Employment and the Economy's Strategy and Foresight Unit coordinates equality and equal opportunities matters in Finland, as well as the Ministry's sustainable development policy.


Legal requirements

Social rules

Non-discrimination, equal treatment and gender equality

Strategy and Foresight Unit of the Ministry of Employment and the Economy

In contracts of employment and employment relationships, employers must at least comply with the national rules of the collective labour agreement and the terms of the employment relationship and working conditions that are considered compulsory in the relevant sector.

According to the Contracts of Employment Act, employers must provide employees with information about the main conditions of work, if they do not appear in the written contract of employment.

All employers should provide pension and accident insurance for their employees. Employers should also ensure that they arrange for an occupational health service.

Employers account for withheld tax and social security payments to the tax authorities.

Employer info

Health and safety at work

Employers must, at their own expense, arrange an occupational health service in order to prevent and lessen health conditions and problems caused by work and working conditions, and to protect and promote employee health, safety and ability to work.

Organising an occupational health service

Employers are obliged to insure their employees against industrial accidents.

Mandatory accident insurance

The Occupational Health Care Act regulates this area, and it is monitored and directed by the industrial safety district. There are eight industrial safety districts in Finland. Their duty is to create conditions for safe, healthy working conditions that promote the ability to work. The goal is for workplaces to keep working conditions in order of their own volition.

Industrial safety districts

Labour law


Contracts of Employment Act

The terms and conditions of employment must be set up in accordance with collective labour agreements.

Under the Contracts of Employment Act, you must inform employees of the basic terms and conditions applicable to their job.

Contracts of Employment Act

It is recommended that a contract of employment be concluded in writing.

Contract of employment

Labour relations

There is no minimum wage in Finland, but employers must comply with the collective labour agreements in force, which define low wages.

In contracts of employment and employment relationships, employers must at least comply with the provisions of the national collective labour agreement (generally binding collective labour agreement) that is considered representative of the relevant sector, and especially those terms and working conditions of the employment relationship that relate to work done by the employee or comparable work.

Collective labour agreements and their generally binding nature

There is more information about annual leave, family leave and other employment matters on the industrial safety districts website, among other things.

Employment matters

Labour protection

Employers must arrange pension and accident insurance for their employees, as well as some form of occupational healthcare. In order to do this, employers are obliged to take out pension insurance for their employees. Employees also contribute to the pension costs.

Employees' mandatory pension insurance

Mandatory accident insurance

Mandatory social rules complete the requirements related to managing staff.

Businesses are free to go beyond the minimum social legal requirements at their own initiative.

Administrative procedures

Social insurance

At the electronic service point for the Social Insurance Institution of Finland, Kela, employers may:

  • report information concerning wages paid to employees for sickness leave, partial sickness allowance, family leave, rehabilitation or part-time work;
  • apply for a sickness allowance for his employees for paid sickness leave (form SV8);
  • report biannual performance for allowances (Y17);
  • send an application to correct annual leave costs accrued for parenting allowances (SV18);
  • apply for maternity, paternity and parenting allowances for employees' paid family leave (forms SV9 and SV29);
  • view applications and declarations that he has sent electronically, as well as the decisions made by Kela and any payments made to the employer.

Social Insurance Institution of Finland, Kela, Employer Service Point

In Finland, employers have a legal obligation to arrange a retirement plan for their employees. Retirement plan insurance also relates to foreign businesses operating in Finland.


There is information about arranging occupational health services and industrial safety on the Social Insurance Institution of Finland (KELA) website.

Social Insurance Institution of Finland - occupational health services

The KELA website also provides information on other employer payments.

Social Insurance Institution of Finland - accident insurance

Pension companies and funds can be found at the employers' service point.

Social Insurance Institution of Finland, Kela, Employer Service Point

Finland has eight industrial safety districts, who create the necessary conditions for safe working environments. The administrations offer online information on industrial safety and other social standards.

Industrial safety district administrations

EnterpriseFinland's Employer Info provides online information on social standards and collective labour agreements.

Employer information (EnterpriseFinland)

Source: European Commission

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