International exchange and degree students are allowed to work in Finland with certain restrictions. The restrictions have to do with the nationality (EU/EEA or non-EU/EEA) and the nature of employment. In addition, the regulations for study-related work, compulsory training or employment having to do with thesis work tend to be more relaxed. For postgraduate research work, the regulations are vaguer and must be checked from the local employment office.

If you are a Nordic or EU/EEA national, you do not need any special permits for working in Finland during your studies. There are no restrictions on how many hours per week you are allowed to work, but you should take care that work does not get in the way of your study progress.

Non-EU students can work within certain limits on a student residence permit if the work is practical training included in the degree or if the amount of part-time work does not exceed 25 hours a week. There are no limits in terms of hours on full-time work outside term times (summer and Christmas holidays specifically). For general regulations on working in Finland, see http://www.te-palvelut.fi/te/en/jobseekers/work_finland/index.html and information provided by Finnish Immigration Service http://www.migri.fi/working_in_finland

Finnish job market

Finding a part-time job can be difficult, especially if you do not have Finnish language skills (or Swedish language skills, in some areas of Finland). Therefore, we strongly encourage full-degree students in particular to learn the local language!

Many jobs, however, are not announced publicly; instead, vacancies may be filled through unofficial channels. Your chances may improve if you keep it in mind that your own initiative is one of the key factors. Although employment and career services or job recruitment agencies can assist you, they cannot arrange a job for you on your behalf, you need to be active yourself. In addition to contacting potential employers, you are advised to:

  • Exchange information and experiences with your fellow students
  • Use your social networks
  • Get acquainted with the Finnish customs of job searching (how to present yourself to a potential employer, how to write your cv, and so on)
  • Remember that few students get lucky first time – do not be too discouraged if you are not immediately successful in your quest for a part-time job.

Finding work

Aalto University offers students Career Services. This should be the first stop for any student looking for a job. Although Career Services do not act as a part-time job recruitment agency, you might contact them for advice on possible local part-time employment opportunities, and general tips on job hunting in Finland. The Career Service has implemented the CareerWeb system that helps employers to recruit students.

You can also contact the Employment Offices in the Helsinki region: see Ministry of Labor’s web pages (mol.fi). Here you can also find a listing of job openings.

Taxation

Taxation policy

If you work in Finland, you have to pay taxes on your income. The taxation policy depends  on how long you stay in Finland - less than six months or over six months – and on the type of your employment. International tax agreements sometimes allow tax deductions for students. In most cases, you can get deduction only if your work in Finland is directly related to your studies at home. Check the Finnish Tax Administration website for details.

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Finnish personal ID-code (henkilötunnus)

You need a personal ID-code to work in Finland. See the Arrival and Settling in-section for more information.

Tax Card

You must request a tax card (verokortti) from a tax office if you are employed and residing in Finland for more than six months. The original tax card should then be presented to the employer so that tax can be withheld. When applying for a tax card you need to give an estimate of how much you will earn in the calendar year (January to December), so that the tax office can assign you a tax percentage. Remember, the higher your predicted income, the higher the tax percentage you will pay. You will also need the Finnish personal ID-code that can be obtained from local register office (Maistraatti).

Career planning

Aalto University Career Services help students prepare for working life by enhancing their job hunting skills and facilitating their employment in relevant jobs. Their services range from individual career counseling and mediation of vacant jobs to organising career fairs.