Once you decide to scale your company in France, the next big step is dipping into the talent pool. You’ll need to understand workplace culture and expectations in France before you begin recruiting. However, it’s equally vital to meet the country’s employment compliance laws to keep your company in line and avoid a potential shutdown. Here are a few things to know about recruiting, hiring, and employment compliance in France.
Recruiting in France
As you begin the recruitment process in France, you must understand the legal requirements as well as cultural expectations. As much as you want to ensure that a candidate is a good fit for your company before hiring them, the laws in France limit the amount of information you can request during the recruitment process.
Laws against discrimination in France
France has robust laws in place to prevent discrimination during recruitment as well as in the workplace. In France, employees are protected against discrimination based on the following categories:
- Moral standards
- Religious beliefs
- Membership in trade unions and union activities
- Political opinions
- Place of residence
- State of health or disability
- Ability to express oneself in languages other than French
- Physical appearance
- Gender identity
- Belonging or non-belonging to a particular race, nation, or ethnicity
- Family situation
- Marital status or pregnancy
- Vulnerability due to an economic or financial situation
- Bank domiciliation
- Sexual orientation
- Loss of autonomy or disability
- Genetic characteristics
Employers should avoid asking any questions about these topics during the recruiting and interviewing process in France. To be safe, you shouldn’t ask for any information that is not directly related to the job. Companies should also avoid language referring to any of these categories in job postings and advertisements.
In addition, there are certain documents and information that companies cannot ask potential hires to provide. These include:
- Personal data, such as the candidate’s Social Security identity number
- School records, other than copies of diplomas
- Previous pay slips and salary history
- Criminal records, unless they are absolutely necessary based on the nature of the position or specific job requirements
How to hire employees in France
Hiring employees in France can be difficult because Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBAs) are common, and the employment laws are complex. The best way to employ and onboard new workers is through a strong, written employment contract. Utilizing a comprehensive, locally compliant employment contract, as well as keeping employee pay slips and documents private, could save you from legal trouble in the future.
The employment contract should include:
- Place of work
- Title, grade, category of the employee, and job description
- Start date
- Compensation and bonuses in euros
- Probationary period
- Working hours
- Termination requirements
- CBA (if applicable)
Since CBAs are common in France, make sure that what you are offering your employees either meets or exceeds those agreements. They typically cover everything from working conditions to employee benefits, so ensuring your employment contract matches any benefits listed in the CBA is essential.
France employment laws
France employment laws provide that employers must give employees an itemized pay slip that includes their gross salary, net salary, Social Security contributions, complementary pensions, and unemployment insurance. Keeping these pay slips for your records can also help you avoid any litigation in the case of termination.
All employees (except certain employee groups) must be paid monthly. Businesses can pay employees with cash, checks, or electronic payments.
Onboarding in France
There is no specific way to onboard employees in France, but you can make your employee’s first day and week more comfortable in several ways. After you hire employees in France, go over the employment contract with them before or during their first day. You can also discuss any other documents such as an employee code of conduct, company policies, or additional job expectations.
Grow globally with G-P.
G-P never forgets that behind every hire is a human being. That’s why we’ve backed our fully customizable suite of global employment products with our robust team of HR and legal experts, so we can remain at your side, ready to support you as you build your global teams. With G-P Meridian Recruit™, you can search for talent anywhere, and find your perfect full-time or contract match with our all-in-one platform.
Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you recruit, hire, and onboard anyone, anywhere.