Estonian Employment Contracts Act states that the employment contracts have to be concluded in a written form, and must specify the working time that the employee performs the agreed duties. If employees are working during traditional working hours from nine to five, calculating the working time is a bit simpler, for employees who work based on the schedule a bit more complicated. Work time management and accounting can be relatively simple, even for huge companies with very complex work schedules. The Act states that the employer must keep account of the working time, but it does not set a concrete form for this, and there are several ways for this.
Here are the answers to some of the most common questions about working time calculations
1. How to keep track of the working time.
As said, the law requires employers to keep time records, but there is no formal requirement about how this should be done. It is permitted to keep the records on paper, in an Excel spreadsheet, or to use a digital work time management solution.
The easiest option is implementing the program developed specifically for this purpose. CompuAccess allows you to plan the schedules, measure the actual hours worked, analyse, and calculate the working hours all in the same system. The need to manually enter data is mostly eliminated by the program, which makes the solution as simple as possible and suitable both for small businesses as well as large factories.
The work time management solution allows you to:
- Create work schedules quickly and easily following the agreed working hours and planned vacations for each employee
- Add an unlimited number of users and work types
- Monitor the real-time workflow (either online or display the important information directly on a big screen in the factory)
- Analyse data and make decisions based on the reports
- Save the time and resources for salary calculations and reduce the potential mistakes – most of the manual entries are replaced by automatic reporting.
2. In which cases does it make sense to implement a work time management tool?
The time records must be kept by all companies, even the small ones. For a smaller company, an Excel spreadsheet most likely is sufficient, especially when the employees are not working on a schedule. For the larger companies, implementing a digital work time management tool probably makes sense and saves a lot of time.
The digital work time management system covers:
- Working times and schedules
- National holidays and planned vacations
- Sick days
- Night shifts
- Specifics of different types of employment contracts.
In addition to the legal requirements, the system also gives vital input to manage the business in a better way and make better decisions about:
- Work and working time in different departments
- Movement between the departments
- How long the machines have been running.
In these cases, it makes sense to implement the work time management program, have a proper overview of workflow, and ensure that you make the best decisions about future plans. The program allows you to check the reports at any time and get statistics about one employee, department, or the whole company.
3. How is the work time accounting regulated in 2020?
There are no changes in the Employment Contracts Act compared to the previous year.
- The full-time equivalent is 40 hours in a week. It is allowed to agree on shorter working hours.
- It is allowed to use the summarised working time if it is agreed on in the contract. This means that during the accounting period, working hours are distributed differently in different weeks.
In case of using the summarised working time, the employers must inform the employee of the conditions under which the working time will be announced. For example, an employee needs to have the information about how long in advance is the working schedule made, when will they know the next schedule, and how long will the accounting period be. In the case of summarised working time, scheduled working days may fall on public holidays and weekends. Hours worked on public holidays will be paid twice, but there is no additional compensation for working on weekends.
It is also essential to make sure, that the employee does not exceed 48 working hours per week, and that there must be daily rest (at least 11 hours within 24 hour period) and weekly rest (36 consecutive hours in a week).
When using CompuAccess to create work schedules, the program also monitors all legal requirements, and if a mistake has happened due to human error, the program will provide a warning.
4. Which is the working calendar of 2020 in Estonia?
|2020. working calendar|
|Period||Day||Public Holidays||Shorter working day||Working days per month
|Working hours per month
|Exceptions in working hours|
|January||1.01/Wednesday||New Year's Day||3||22||176|
|February||24.02/Monday||Independence Day||3||19||152||If 23.02 is a working day, then working hours are 149|
|Q1 total:||2 public holidays, 1 shorter working day||63||504||If 23.02 is a working day, then working hours are 501|
|3||20||160||If 22.06 is a working day, then working hours are 157.|
|Q2 total:||6 public holidays, 1 shorter working day||61||488||If 22.06 is a working day, then working hours are 485|
|Q3 total:||1 public holiday||65||520|
|25.12/Friday||1st Christmas Day|
|25.12/Saturday||2nd Christmas Day|
|IV kv kokku||3 public holidays, 1 shorter working day||64||512||
|Year total:||12 public holidays, 9 of these on working days||253||2024||If all exceptions are valid, then working hours are 2012.|
Based on the Employment Act § 53 and the law about public holidays and anniversaries the previous working days to the following holidays are 3 hours shorter: New Year’s Day, Anniversary of Estonia, Victory Day and Christmas Eve.
Working weeks per year: 50.60
Working days per month: 21.08
Working hours per week: 39.82
Working hours per month: 167.92