5 things to know before accepting a job offer in Finland
Are you considering working in Finland? There are many reasons to move to Finland, from an unbeatable work life balance, world-class education, high standard of living and incredible outdoor experiences - no wonder why it’s the happiest country in the world! Finland is also one of the best foreign-language countries for English speakers - but there are still some barriers to finding information. Check out my top 5 tips for foreigners considering a job offer in Finland.
Negotiate for holidays
In Finland, each employee accrues holidays in their first ‘holiday credit year’ and spends them the following year. If you want to take paid holidays during your first year on the job, you'll need to negotiate it as part of your compensation package - otherwise, you may work up to a full year without paid leave. Learn more about the Annual Holidays Act.
You’ll be encouraged to take holiday in July
People in Finland take one month of holiday during the summer and one week during the winter. The summer holiday can be taken from 2 May to 30 September, and the winter holiday between 1 October and 30 April. Your employer may encourage their workers to take at least two weeks in July, which is when most people in Finland take time off.
You may get a holiday bonus - hurrah!
Some companies pay a holiday bonus where workers get paid an additional 50% over the holiday period. It’s not mandatory, so if your company pays a holiday bonus it’s because they choose to. Most companies pay the bonus in July.
Use a Finland-specific salary comparison website
Check your salary expectations against the market rate before entering negotiations with a Finnish employer - it’s the best way to ensure you’re both agreeing to a fair price. Most of the widely used salary information websites are in Finnish - which is when Google Translate’s extension for Chrome comes in handy. Check out the top websites for salary information in Finland:
- Oikotie’s Salary Comparison
- Duunitori’s Salary Comparison
- Paylab’s Salaries by Job
- Glassdoor, although it's less relevant in Finland
Consider joining an unemployment fund
Unemployment funds offer security if you lose your job or are temporarily/permanently laid off. They pay an earnings-related daily allowance and offer coaching and legal advice. In 2022, Finland’s second largest unemployment fund KOKO cost 63 euros per year, paying 300 to 500 of unemployment allowance. Someone earning 5 200 euros per month would typically receive more than 2 200 euros per month, whereas Kela (Finnish social security) would only pay about 700 euros per month.
You can find a list of unemployment funds on TYJ’s Fund’s Contact Information page.
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