Costs of telework for companies


Companies offering telework to their employees have to bear the costs of this scheme. In order to calculate these costs, the following issues need to be considered:

Existing telework legislation

To begin with, it is necessary to determine whether there is any specific legislation governing teleworking in the country where teleworking is applied. If so, this may determine what costs are to be borne by both employer and employee.

For example, in Spain, Law 10/2021 on telecommuting establishes in Articles 11 and 12 that telecommuters are entitled to the provision and adequate maintenance by the company of all the means, equipment and tools necessary for the development of the activity.

It will also be necessary to refer to the relevant collective agreements and conventions in each case, as some of them cover teleworking issues.

Returning to the Spanish example, the company should pay attention not only to equipment but also to tax obligations. When teleworking exceeds 30% of the working shift, the company must pay a compensation taxed as part of the salary, being generally a fixed compensation ranging between 25 and 35 euros per month.

Agreement between employer and employee

It is recommended, and according to some regulations mandatory, that a telework agreement should be signed between the company and the teleworker. This may also include remuneration and/or benefits for the teleworker when they arise, which, in any case, will not be contrary to existing regulations.

Considerations when having an employee teleworking from another country

In case that the company is in one country and the employee is teleworking from another country, European regulations and/or existing bilateral agreements between these States must be considered. Depending on the country to which the employee is sent, the employee's situation and working conditions may be different, so the terms and conditions of the employment relationship may have to be renegotiated and the company may have to bring the employee's conditions into line with local regulations.

Another of the circumstances that must be taken into account is tax residence, taking into account the duration of the stay in that country and, therefore, the effect on the tax system, as well as on Social Security.

It should be added that the method used by the company and teleworker to carry out this posting will be decisive, for example whether it is through a head office or branch, through the use of an intermediary company, through a relationship of economically dependent self-employed or contractor, as well as through a temporary posting of the worker. Each of these cases has associated costs which the company must consider.