This site uses cookies. and this alert will appear once and then not again.

Tackling the issue of “social dumping” has long been an area of focus for the EU and for almost 20 years they have tried to address this issue. Since the launch of its 1996 Directive, EU Member States have been given EU-wide instructions on how to guarantee the minimum employment rights of workers moving temporarily to other member states to deliver services. 

Though the release of its 2014 Enforcement Directive, which was adopted into national law by each member state a couple of years later, the EU has taken measures to ensure compliance with the original Posted Worker Directive – requiring online or in-person registration of posted workers and in some cases levying fines in the millions of Euros for non-compliance. With the revision of the Directive in 2018, further requirements are planned to be introduced from July 2020.

Here’s how you can navigate the requirements and ensure your EU operations remain compliant:

1. Are you asking the right questions?
Making sure that you understand and comply with the differing employment rights in each EU country can be complex, for example:

  • Are you comfortable that each Posted Worker is receiving the local minimum wage?
  • What are the maximum working hours?
  • Do holiday entitlements vary?

Ensuring you have answers to these questions will help you ensure compliance with the PWD requirements.

2. Minimum rights will soon become equal rights.
The 2018 PWD Revision aims to ensure that workers aren’t simply given protection to receive the minimum rights in the Host member state – the expectation will be that Equal rights are provided for Equal work. So if you are moving staff from lower to higher income countries, remuneration adjustments may become the new norm - even if this is only for a few days. Employment rights, such as holiday entitlements and maternity leave may also need to be adjusted to comply with the local registrations.

3. Can you identify your Posted Workers?
Probably one of the main challenges for many organisations. Given the relationship between time spent in a location and activities performed, when determining whether a traveller is considered a posted worker, it is key to have the right technology and processes in place to make instant determinations. We estimate that between 20-40% of business travellers can require a notification to be completed pre travel (depending on industry) – and the fines that have already been administered for non-compliance have been very severe.

4. Shift your focus from retrospective to pre-travel compliance.
The Directive states that all necessary registrations must be processed before travel takes place to the Host member state. This can feel like a challenging and resource-intensive requirement if the right processes and governance are not in place for data gathering pre travel.

5. Identify local liaison contacts and the documentation you need to store.
All Member States will require companies to provide the correct documentation in a short amount of time in the event of a review or audit (typically a matter of days/weeks, not months). Storage, translation and management of such documentation is key to avoiding large penalties.

The EU Posted Workers Directive is just one more reason for organisations to consider reviewing business travel on a pre rather than post travel basis to ensure full compliance.

At PwC we are assisting organisations in understanding the requirements of the Posted Worker Directive, to ensure they are fully compliant with the legislation on a country-by-country basis.

Please get in touch with Lindsey Barras or your usual PwC contact to discuss further.