The Working Hours Act allows the employee and the employer to agree upon flexible working hours. Flexible working hours provide flexibility in working time arrangements. It is meant, in particular, to demanding expert work and information-intensive work. Flexible working hours may also be used in other work which is time and location independent.
Flexible working hours may be agreed upon in any duties in which the employee may independently determine the placement of working hours and the location of work, of at least half of the total working hours. When using flexible working hours, the employer may define the tasks and objectives but the employee shall, for the most part, be able to independently decide when and where he/she works.
Flexible working hours shall not increase the employee’s regular working hours but allow for more flexible working time arrangements. When applying flexible working hours, the regular weekly working hours shall not exceed an average weekly working time of 40 hours within a reference period of four months.
A written agreement on flexible working hours
A written agreement shall be concluded on flexible working hours. As a minimum, the agreement shall include provisions for the days on which the employee may place working hours. As a rule, work shall only be performed on working days. The employer and the employee may also agree that work is performed on more than five days a week, or less than that.
The agreement shall also have provisions for the placement of the weekly rest. One day of the week, e.g. Sunday, may be placed outside the working time, to secure the employee’s weekly rest on Sundays. If the employee may work on any day of the week, the employer shall monitor the materialization of the weekly rest.
The agreement shall have provisions for a possible fixed working time, i.e. when the employee shall be present or reachable. The fixed working hours may be defined as certain hours of a certain day of the week. However, the fixed working hours may cover a maximum of 50% of the employee’s regular working hours. Fixed working hours shall not be placed between 23:00 and 6:00.
The agreement’s provisions for flexible working hours may be terminated at the end of the reference period following the current one. The agreement on flexible working hours shall include provisions for the applicable working hours arrangement after the termination of the agreement.
Provisions for additional work and overtime
When a flexible working hours system is used, additional work and overtime must be expressly agreed on. When applying flexible working hours, the parties may agree upon a separate, fixed compensation for additional work, overtime and Sunday work.
Sunday work may also be agreed upon. If the employee may choose between working on a working day or Sunday, normal pay is paid for Sunday work. If the employer requires the employee to work on Sunday, a Sunday work compensation shall be paid.
Recording working time when applying flexible working hours
Recording working time when applying flexible working hours is different from other working hours arrangements. The employee has to submit the employer, by pay period, a list of working hours performed within regular working hours to indicate the weekly working hours and the weekly rest. The employer shall record only the hours reported by the employee into the working hours register. At the same time, the employer has to monitor that the rest time is realized and that the maximum working hours are not exceeded.
Contract template for flexible working hours
An agreement on flexible working hours shall include at least the following:
1) days on which the employee may place working hours;
2) the placement of the weekly rest;
3) possible fixed working hours, however not to be placed between 23:00 and 6:00;
4) the working hours arrangement applicable after the termination of the flexible working hours agreement. Please use the contract template for flexible working hours for your agreement.