Using temporary workers through foreign subcontracting is useful when you need hands temporarily and can't find them in the local job market. You shouldn't put foreign subcontractors on your own payroll and it's someone else who handles their day-to-day management. But there are still some caveats to be made, especially after some staggering reports in the news about economic exploitation. Read how to avoid penalties with proper foreign employment!
Foreign subcontracting means that a foreign company employs people in Belgium who are thus - under certain conditions - still covered by the social security of their home country. They are thus "seconded" to the country where the work takes place. A wonderful solution for you as a company, especially during peak times. Foreign subcontractors usually have sufficient qualified personnel and you do not have the hassle of adding extra people to your payroll.
But...do you know who is on your project in the meantime? Or what is included in the costs? Or most importantly, whether the people employed are working and being paid in accordance with Belgian legislation?
Due to the new secondment directives of 08/2020, you, as the hirer of the subcontractor, must be able to prove that Belgian laws and regulations are applied to the seconded employee. Failure to comply with Belgian laws and regulations carries criminal consequences so this is really not something you want to take lightly.
Therefore, it is sometimes safer to have contracts with foreign subcontractors convert to contracts through Belgian temporary employment. This way, your employee is also immediately really employed under Belgian law.
Using foreign posting correctly
We know from experience that this transition can often be complex. Before, employees received an amount per week or month in their country of origin, without more details. Now there is gross and net pay, social charges, legal leave, different working conditions, and so on. You have to explain and frame that well to the foreign employees.
Moreover, these employees will now suddenly be managed directly by the Belgian company (you) and no longer by the subcontractor. And so it may also be that management will no longer be done in the native language, but in English. Which makes internal communication a new challenge.
Therefore, you can call on companies that Specialize in the acquisition of subcontractors. They help both your company and the new employees in this transition. The coaching process often takes several months, just until everyone is completely comfortable with the new situation.
The counseling program often includes the following components:
- Information sessions for customers and employees
- Explaining the rights and obligations of an employment in Belgium
- Explanation around safety rules
The new temps get in addition:
- Explaining the new contract reality in their own language
- Explanation of wages and taxes in Belgium
- A VCU safety training where appropriate
- Guidance on living and working in Belgium
- Housing & transportation as needed
Link2Europe also specializes in the conversion of foreign posting to Belgian temporary employment. With our personal approach, we show understanding of the new situation for both client and candidate. We guide both as long as necessary and until the violins are completely in tune. Read more about it and entrust your project to us.