Hiring International Talent

Hello there! Congratulations on your decision to hire an international talent! We’re sure they will be an excellent addition to your team.

When hiring an international talent, the employer needs to take care of several matters from ensuring the right to work to keeping the employee happy in Finland. There is quite a lot of detail involved and we thought we would share our knowledge on these matters to help you along. This text explains some of the most important topics and directs you forward.

SETTING EXPECTATIONS

As you discuss the employment prospect with your future employee, remember to also discuss expectations, both theirs and yours. You should be able to convey what you are offering them and expect from them in return.

In addition, you are in the position to tell them about working and living in Finland since you very likely are one of their most important contacts here. They will have an idea about working in your company but if they do not have prior knowledge of Finland, they might not have much of an idea of what life is like here. So do tell them what you can, direct them to resources about Finland and Finnish culture, provide the opportunity to talk with a future colleague etc. We’d also be happy to provide you with relevant material, a training etc.

To begin with:

  • Agree on work related matters, such as tasks, salary, benefits, holidays, terms and conditions etc.
  • Tell them about working and living in Finland
  • Tell them to prepare their official documentation in advance
  • Direct them to additional resources
  • Connect them with your company’s HR
  • Connect them with a future colleague
  • Consider additional material, training etc.

PR puzzle3

RIGHT TO WORK

As an employer, you are obligated by law to confirm that your employees have the right to perform the work you are hiring them for in Finland. For instance, if you are hiring a developer to work for you full-time for more than 3 months, they should have more than a visa for Finland. The right documentation is very likely either an EU registration or a residence permit for a specialist.

The right to work can be checked and acquired from the Finnish Immigration Services (Migri). Nordic citizens only need to register at the magistrate. You can read more about this in our previous text (link) and on Migri’s website.

Information for employers  and on the right to work.

You should ask your employee to provide proof of their right to work. You should confirm their identity and that the proof of right to work matches their details and the situation. It is advisable to take a copy, and remind the employee of the need to renew the permit, if necessary.

Proof of the right to work can be

  • EU registration certificate for EU residents
  • Residence permit for Finland, a visa or confirmation of visa waiver (under 90 days only) for non EU residents
  • Excerpt of the national population registration for Nordic citizens
  • EU Blue Card

NB! A residence permit for another EU country does not automatically grant the right to work in Finland. Check the situation with Migri.

You can assist the employee in taking care of their registration or residence permit. If the employee grants you access to the Immigration Service’s system, Enter Finland, you can add information and pay the fees as well. You can also make use of relocation services in this, and anything else related to moving and settling-in Finland.

INFORMING TE SERVICES OF FOREIGN EMPLOYEES

Another obligation is to inform the local TE services, i.e. public employment and business services, about all foreign employees who are not EU citizens. The information should include key employment conditions and compliance with the collective agreement. If you are not sure what the relevant collective agreement is, contact TE services or the Confederation of Finnish Industries.

NB! Failing to comply with your employer obligations can result in a fine or other sanctions.

TAXATION, SOCIAL SECURITY ETC.

Obviously all normal employer obligations, such as safe working conditions, insurances, suitable tools and support services, apply to all employees regardless of their nationality. In Finland, the employer also takes care of the tax and other contributions from the employee’s salary. For more information, visit the tax office’s website.

The employee must provide you with a tax card or otherwise you must make a 60% tax deduction from the salary. The high tax can be compensated after the employee provides you with a tax card but it is better to get taxation right to begin with. Ask your employee to contact the tax office as soon as possible.

Most employees are enrolled in the Finnish social security system managed by Kansaneläkelaitos (Kela). Part of the contributions from a salary go to the social security system. An employee can apply for social security coverage from Kela. It is good to explain to the employee all the contributions that will be made from the salary, so that the net salary does not come as a surprise to them.

It is also good to note that pension contributions accrued into the Finnish system stay in the Finnish system, even if the person moves abroad. They can apply for their pension when they become of pensionable age in Finland, and the pension benefit can be paid to them anywhere in the world.

Taxation, social security and pension issues can be addressed in International House Helsinki, if the employee works or lives in the capital area of Finland. The service desk personnel can explain these matters in more detail, and a person can get their tax card and apply for social security coverage on the spot, for instance. For more information visit their website.

SETTLING-IN

Moving to a new country or city is a big decision and entails more than just the bureaucracy. Obviously, induction to the work and working community is very important and as the employer, you need to pay attention to that. As mentioned earlier, international talents might wish for a more detailed induction into working and living in Finland, and usually appreciate help with many practicalities too.

Things to consider regarding settling-in

  • accommodation
  • daily life
  • induction to work
  • integration to local community
  • language courses

Wherever you live, the most important thing is to have some place to call home. One of the best things that you as the employer can do, is help your new employee find their new home. In addition, it is great if you can help them with issues related to daily life and getting to know their new city and local community. The rental market in Finland can be tight, especially in the capital area. Searching for the right place might take some time so it’s good to start early. Of course, furnished short-term accommodation is also available and it might be a good option in the beginning. For the longer term, it is usually better to find a ‘normal’ rental apartment since that is usually more affordable and also more comfortable.

Starting a new job is always exciting and surely your working community is full of great people. Hobbies, interest groups and networks are also great for making new friends and finding a good work-life balance. Learning about the local culture and language is highly recommendable, and key to really becoming a local. There are plenty of Finnish language courses available, and you can get a cultural training from us, for instance. The most important thing is to support your employer with starting their new job and life in Finland. A smooth start sets the course for a fruitful and enjoyable experience, for you and them.

We hope you found this information useful and helpful. If you would like any further assistance with international recruitment, talent attraction or training for instance, do contact us and let’s talk more.

Your partners in internationalization,

Kirsi & Tanja

internationalfoxagency@gmail.com

Links

Migri, Finnish Immigration Services

International House Helsinki

Kela, social security institution

Vero, tax office

Infopankki, information on living in Finland in several languages

Business Finland, information about working in Finland

Visit Finland, information about Finland

 

 

About Kirsi Korhonen

Internationalist by heart and profession. Owner and founder of International Fox Agency linkedin.com/in/kirsi internationalfoxagency.wordpress.com

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