Central government has three forms of working hours: office, weekly and averaged over a period, as agreed in the collective agreement on working hours for government employees. Government agencies may have other working time arrangements intended for specific activities. Usually the Working Hours Act (872/2019) also applies to central government employees. However, some employees, such as judges in the court system, are completely outside the scope of working hours regulations.
Office working hours
Office working hours apply in ministries and in specialist and administrative roles at government agencies. The regular working hours are 7 hours 15 minutes a day or 36 hours 15 minutes a week. Working hours are usually based on the agency’s opening hours, which are from Monday to Friday 8.00–16.15. Flexitime and other flexible working arrangements are widely in place, enabling employees to decide, within certain limits, when to start and end work and to make other decisions.
Weekly working hours
Other professionals at government agencies follow weekly working hours, where the daily regular working hours vary from 6 hours 15 minutes to 8 hours, so that the weekly regular working hours are 38 hours 15 minutes.
Working hours averaged over a period
Period-based hours apply in roles requiring 24-hour availability every day of the week, such as in police work. In period-based work, the regular working hours have been set at 114 hours 45 minutes over a three-week period. The daily and weekly working hours and times are given in the personnel scheduling system.
Working hours bank
The working hours bank can be used for all types of working hours. Employees collect working hours or monetary benefits exchanged for leave, which can then be taken as leave. The introduction and details of a working time bank are agreed locally by the government agencies, taking into account the provisions of the collective agreement on working hours for government employees.
Employees can work remotely it is compatible with the nature and tasks of their role.
- Principles of distance work and the terms of employment, instruction 5 November 2020 (in Finnish)
- Application of working hours agreement and Working Hours Act, regulation/instruction 1 June 2020 PDF (in Finnish)
- Issues to consider in timing of office workers’ working hours; memorandum of the working hours working group 8 June 2018 (in Finnish)
- Collective agreement on working hours for government employees, 8 April 2020 (in Finnish)
- Working Hours Act 872/2019 (Finlex) (in Finnish)
- Decree on the Office Hours of Government Agencies 332/1994 (Finlex) (in Finnish)
Senior Ministerial Adviser
tel. +358 2955 30022