Top ten tips for earning a higher salary in Sweden

Want more money? Want to learn how to convince your Swedish boss that you are indispensable? Sure, but make sure you do your homework first, explains union ombudsman Anna-Karin Mattsson.

Top ten tips for earning a higher salary in Sweden

First things first, check if your place of work has a collective bargaining agreement.

“A great deal of companies in Sweden have this arrangement, which could be a key difference if you have moved here from another country,” Mattsson from the white-collar trade union Unionen told The Local.

Mattsson explains that there aren’t laws in Sweden governing wages, because “the Swedish model” is dominated by the “central wage contract” (centralt löneavtal) – where the unions collectively strike bargains with employers’ organizations.

Ten steps to help you get the salary you want in Sweden

You may have seen the term “avtalsrörelse” in the Swedish papers? That’s what takes place when this type of broad collective bargaining get under way in Sweden.

That’s the first of three structures that may apply to your place of work in Sweden. You’ll need to get to grips with what deal applies to you before any talk of salaries can get under way.

The second structure is the “local wage contract” (lokalt löneavtal) where employees go on to make a deal with their specific company. This deal is not allowed to include worse working conditions or lower wages than the industry-wide central wage contract, as outlined above.

SEE ALSO: Click here for the latest listings for jobs in Sweden

If your place of work is not tied to the two options above, however, a third version kicks in. It gives you more scope to negotiate, but also means you need to be on your toes when you sign up for a new job.

“Your employer has no obligation to discuss your salary, or to top it up,” Mattsson said.

So while the “individual wage contract” (individuell löneförhandling or lönesamtal) has the potential for more leverage, you need to make sure that your actual job contract states you have the right to renegotiate.

It could be once a year, or at the end of a probationary period, or at any other interval that you and your employer agree to. The key is to make note of that agreement so you actually end up at the negotiation table in the first place.

And when you get to that point, here is a list of what to think about when you actually sit down with the boss.

READ ON: Ten tips to get the salary you want in Sweden

Ann Törnkvist

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Obama reveals he wants to work for… Spotify?

Barack Obama may be leaving the White House, but it looks like he's got his future all planned out.

Obama reveals he wants to work for... Spotify?
Barack Obama on a visit to Sweden in 2013. Photo: AP Photo/Frank Augstein

One of Obama's favourite trips abroad was his 2013 visit to Sweden, US tech entrepreneur, podcast editor and former The Local blogger Natalia Brzezinski has revealed the president told her.

She and her husband Mark Brzezinski, who was the US ambassador to Sweden 2011-2015, were invited to the White House on Wednesday evening along with other diplomats appointed by Obama.

“I finally got the chance to thank him for the life-changing appointment to Sweden,” she wrote in a post on Instagram.

“He said word for word: 'I loved visiting you in Stockholm, it was my favourite trip. I plan to go back there really soon'.”

Obama went to Stockholm on an official state visit in 2013. And Brzezinski, the CEO of creative tech festival Symposium Stockholm, revealed she tried to tempt him back to attend its Brilliant Minds conference in June.

He did not promise anything, but did at least urge Brzezinski to “send him the details”.

Obama leaves his post on January 20th, handing over the reins to Republican president-elect Donald Trump. As for the outgoing president's future, it looks like he's got his heart set on a certain Swedish music streaming giant.

“I'm still waiting for my job at Spotify… 'cause I know y'all loved my playlist,” Brzezinski quoted him as saying.

We are pretty sure he was joking, but it is not the first time Obama has praised Sweden.

Former prime minister Fredrik Reinfeldt revealed in an interview last year that the US president had told him on his visit to Stockholm that he would love to return again with his family.

“Shortly thereafter I met Michelle and Barack Obama again in New York and Michelle confirmed that Barack talked to her about it after his visit to Stockholm. I said I hoped they would find time to return after his presidency,” Reinfeldt told the Aftonbladet tabloid in September.