Working hours bank increases flexibility and productivity 

Flexibility is the key word as regards a working hours bank. The purpose is to promote the productivity and competitiveness or companies and employees, to take personnel's individual working hours needs into account as well as to increase occupational well-being and job satisfaction.

Company- or workplace-specifically, a local working hours bank agreement is established on the adoption and terms of the working hours bank.

Working hours banks and related legislation have been developed trilaterally between the Government and employee and employer organisations since the beginning of the 2000s. The penetration of working hours banks has been slow even though the experiences of the companies that have adopted it have been mainly positive both on the employer and employee side.

The Finnish Business School Graduates encourages companies to bravely adopt the system, as in general, both the employer and employee sides benefit from clearly defined and agreed rules.

How does a working hours bank work?

  • A working hours bank is a coordination arrangement for work and leisure based on voluntary participation by all parties involved.
  • Working hours, earned time off or benefits converted into leisure can be saved or borrowed as well as combined together to adapt them to the person's private life needs in the long term.
  • In practice, the hours accumulated in the working hours bank can be taken out later as time off or paid in money if agreement cannot reached on the date(s) on which the employee takes time off or if the person changes jobs before taking the time off.
  • Using a working hours bank requires that a functional working hours monitoring system is adopted as its basis.

Batches transferred with a working hours bank agreement can include:

  • Saved leave as referred to in Section 27 of the Annual Holidays Act
  • Time off due to reduced working hours
  • Overtime compensation
  • Extra pay for Sunday work
  • Compensation for travel time
  • Holiday bonuses;
  • Results-based pay
  • Accumulated excess hours (flexible working hours) exceeding 40 hours can only be transferred with a national collective agreement.


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