Mobility and availability of labour

(Updated 28.8.2020)

Various movement restrictions have been set in Finland due to the coronavirus epidemic. The impacts of the restrictions are visible among highly educated employees sought for expert positions as well as e.g. seasonal workers in agriculture. (Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment).

Finding employees and funding

Visibility for jobs

Business Finland coordinates the national Jobs in Finland web page.  Jobs targeted at highly educated professionals in which skills of Finnish and Swedish language are not required may be posted to be displayed on a national website: www.jobs.workinfinland.fi.

Turku Science Park Ltd manages a LinkedIn group where employers can reach talents in Turku region. Click to the LinkedIn group

The Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners’ (MTK) Töitä Suomesta (Work in Finland) portal helps agriculture employers and employees find each other: www.töitäsuomesta.fi (in Finnish).

Recruitment interviews

Remote interviews can be carried out using tools such as:

Skype (www.skype.com)
Zoom (www.zoom.us)
Google Hangouts (www.hangouts.google.com)
RecRight  application (www.recright.com) is a convenient tool if there are several interviewees.

Launched by the TE Office, MessiLive.fi transmissions (www.messilive.fi/) can be sent remotely to employers regardless of their location.

Business Finland’s Talent Explorer funding

Talent Explorer funding may be useful when hiring the company’s first international professional.

Recruitment of international employees

Recruitment from abroad

Finland’s missions abroad are not receiving new applications for residence permits or visas from 19 March 2020 on. The applications filed before that will be processed as per normal. The interviews related to residence permit applications in the missions have been suspended until further notice.

Priority in permit processing conducted by the Finnish Immigration Service, TE Offices and ELY Centres will be given to work considered necessary for the security of supply, health care and the functioning of the labour market.

More information on Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment page

Seasonal workers from abroad

Seasonal workers are particularly commonplace in primary production tasks. In the spring, workers arriving in Finland form a core group in the labour force. For a long time, these seasonal workers have carried out the work required for the start of the growing season and have ensured that it is safe for less experienced workers arriving in the spring and later in the growing season to carry out their work.

The use of foreign seasonal labour is particularly important in tasks requiring expertise gained from previous years’ work at the location in question.

It is required that third-country nationals with seasonal residence permit, arriving to Finland for the first time, are listed on Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry of Finland’s seasonal worker quota.

Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment: Policy on the entry of workers due to essential work finalised

Recruitment in Finland

International students studying in Finland may work in Finland without a specific permit (InfoFinland).

A foreigner residing in Finland usually has arranged the right to employment and can start working. If they need a new kind of a permit, e.g. a residence permit for an employee or expert, they can apply for it at a service point of the Finnish Immigration Service  in Finland. Online service Enter Finland is the fastest and most affordable way to file an application. The normal 3-month period for identification has been extended due to the exceptional arrangements.

Third-country nationals residing with a residence permit may change employer and profession without applying for a further permit. The changes in the law will enable the foreigners to work in positions that are important for security of supply and the labor market. The temporary provisions are valid until 31.10.2020.

Lakimuutokset kolmansien maiden kansalaisten oikeudesta työskennellä huoltovarmuuden ja työmarkkinoiden toimivuuden kannalta tärkeissä tehtävissä voimaan 9.4.2020 (in Finnish)

Arrival in Finland

Cross-border traffic at Finland’s borders are partially restricted to prevent the spread of the corona virus. The world-wide corona situations are evaluated regularly and are reflected on the restrictions.  Current guideline is available from Finnish Boarder Guard pages.

Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment’s Q & A from this link 

For example, work travel based on employment or commissioning from the Schengen area, other EU countries or the United Kingdom is permitted for citizens of the Schengen area, other EU countries or the United Kingdom. Entry into the country is also permitted for the Finnish residence permit holders.

At the border check, submission of documents to establish the entry conditions have been asked.

Third-country nationals with residence permit, arriving to Finland for the first time, are allowed to arrive starting from 1.5.2020. Seasonal residence permits are not considered in the same category. It is required that third-country nationals with seasonal residence permit, arriving to Finland for the first time, are listed on Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry of Finland’s seasonal worker quota.

Finnish Border Guard Questions and Answers here.

Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment’s list of tasks that are essential from the point of view of security of supply or critical for the operations of the sector in question. Read the list here.

The employer must submit the filled form (the link below) to the employee. The form is to be presented to the Border Guard in the event of a border crossing.

The sectoral and task-specific assessment does not constitute a preliminary decision on entry. The decision is made by the border control authority at each border crossing point on a case-by-case basis.

Direct links to the forms presented in the Ministry’s webpage:

Employer’s justification for the necessity of an employee entering the country during the state of emergency (FI/EN)

Employer’s justification for the necessity of an employee entering the country during the state of emergency (SV/EN)

All workers entering the country will be directed to conditions equivalent to two weeks of quarantine. It is the responsibility of employers to arrange transport from the point of entry to the quarantine station.

Changes in planned recruitment

The special measures caused by the coronavirus may require a change of plans, but they do not affect the employer’s obligations to verify the right to work, report international employees to the TE Office, or pay salary and other statutory charges.

Starting work abroad

Working for a Finnish employer can be started in another country. In addition to providing instructions on work tasks, it should be noted that the employer may be subject to employer’s obligations in the country where the person is working. Such obligations may include e.g. statutory social security contributions, insurances and taxation. For example the European Union’s website provides information of the authorities of different countries from which you can request additional information on fulfilling the obligations in the country in question.

Postponing the start of an employment relationship and cancelling a recruitment

In uncertain circumstances it may be necessary to postpone the start of an employment relationship or cancel a planned recruitment completely. Even if the employment contract had already been signed, there is no obligation to pay remuneration, if the conditions of the employment relationship are not fulfilled. Such unfulfilled conditions include e.g. a) employment in Finland has been agreed on with the person, and they cannot currently come to Finland to work, b) the person does not obtain on time a permit entitling them to perform the agreed work.

Each case may, however, involve specific details, so it is advisable to consult professionals of labour law.

Networks and tips for new employees

In addition to regular familiarisation, it is important to inform new employees (especially those coming from abroad) about your organisation’s operating model in the exceptional circumstances and about the sources where they can find up-to-date and reliable information on the subject, also in English if necessary.

Information on Turku and Finland

Career in Turku & Southwest Finland website provides information on the region of Southwest Finland in English. Click to Career in Southwest Finland

Welcome to Finland (Tervetuloa Suomeen) guide provides clear information for all new residences in Finland. The guide can be found in many languages from Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment website.

Peer support and local networks

Local networks are important for new employees to feel welcome. You can mention e.g. the following channels to new employees and their families:

Expat Turku Network group
Talent Turku LinkedIn group
International Working Women of Finland association

Need for personal assistance?

Please fill out this form to request a call and our specialist will contact you no later than the following business day. By filling in the form the specific questions in your company we will find the most relevant information regarding your situation.