Applying penalties, cutting salaries, retaining original copies of personal documents, transferring employees to different positions, not registering internal labor regulations, extending probation periods, and so on, are common errors that enterprises often make during the recruitment process and in handling their employees.
One of the aspects in which companies often violate legal regulations is regarding the probationary period and the corresponding salary during that period.
Regarding the probationary period
The probationary period is determined by mutual agreement based on the nature and complexity of the job, but it should only be applied once for a specific position and must meet the following conditions:
- Not exceeding 180 days for managerial positions.
- Not exceeding 60 days for positions requiring professional or technical qualifications from college level and above.
- Not exceeding 30 days for positions requiring professional or technical qualifications from intermediate level, technical workers, or specialized employees.
- Not exceeding 6 working days for other positions.
Therefore, it should be noted that not all probationary periods are 60 days. In practice, many companies propose extending the probationary period from 3 to 6 months for normal office positions that require a university degree. Such probationary periods violate labor laws.
For candidates applying for managerial positions, the probationary period can be extended up to 180 days because these positions require time for testing and the company needs to assess the candidate’s capabilities over an extended period before deciding on hiring personnel for important positions within the company.
In addition, companies should establish internal procedures for evaluating the candidate’s performance and job outcomes during the probationary period. The law requires the companies to inform the employee of the probationary results upon completion of the work period. However, the law does not specify the specific content that must be included in this notification. In practice, companies often communicate whether the employees have met the requirements during this period and whether the companies propose to formally sign an employment contract with the employees.
During the probationary period, both parties have the right to terminate their employment without prior notice and without having to compensate the other party. Therefore, companies need to pay attention to classifying job tasks, assigning responsibilities, and closely monitoring employees to ensure proactive management in cases where the employees fail to meet the companies’ expectations or when the employees proactively terminate the employment relationship during the probationary period.
Regarding the agreement form during the probationary period
The companies and the employees can document the probationary terms in either the employment contracts or separate probationary contracts. Depending on the companies’ policies, both options have equal legal validity.
In the case of a probationary contract, where the probationary terms are explicitly stated, the company needs to consider the policies, benefits, rights, and obligations during the probationary period compared to the formal employment period.
Regarding the salary during the probationary period
The salary of employees during the probationary period is subject to mutual agreement, but it must be at least 85% of the salary for the corresponding position.
Currently, there are companies in the market that apply 100% of the regular salary during the probationary period. However, this is a proposed salary level that depends on the financial situation of the company and the agreement between the parties. Currently, the legal requirement sets the minimum salary during the probationary period at 85% of the regular salary.
Internal Labor Regulations
Companies with more than 10 employees are required to have written internal labor regulations and register them with the competent labor management authority. The internal labor regulations must be communicated to the employees, and the key provisions must be posted in necessary locations at the workplace. However, in practice, many companies tend to neglect to register their internal labor regulations or fail to inform their employees about the internal labor regulations after registering them with the competent authority.
In the case of companies with fewer than 10 employees, it is not mandatory to issue written internal labor regulations. However, they still need to agree upon the content regarding labor discipline and material responsibilities within the employment contracts.
Transferring employees to another job different from the labor contract
Companies are allowed to temporarily transfer employees to perform different tasks than stated in their employment contracts under certain circumstances regulated by the law. However, the total accumulated working time in a different job cannot exceed 60 working days per year. Additionally, employees must be notified of this change at least 3 working days in advance.
When employees are assigned to different tasks, they should be paid according to the new job’s wage rate. If the wage for the new job is lower than the previous job, the employee’s original wage must be maintained for a period of 30 working days. The wage for the new job should be at least 85% of the previous wage but not lower than the minimum wage.
Currently, many companies are abusing this practice by transferring employees to different tasks, and then hiring new employees as replacements. However, it’s important to note that this practice is not in compliance with the legal regulations. The essence of transferring employees to perform different tasks is temporary and arises from certain reasons, such as unexpected difficulties due to natural disasters, fires, dangerous epidemics, preventive measures, occupational accidents, occupational diseases, electrical or water incidents, or production and business needs. Once these reasons have been resolved and the prescribed time has elapsed, the companies must allow the employee to return to their normal work.
Applying penalties and deducting salary
Companies are not allowed to impose fines or salary deductions as a substitute for labor disciplinary measures.
In the case where employees cause damage to tools, equipment, or unintentionally engage in other behaviors resulting in minor property damage for the business, with costs not exceeding 10 months of the regional minimum wage, the companies have the right to deduct the employees’ salary to compensate for the damages. The maximum compensation amount is limited to 3 months’ salary, and the deduction should not exceed 30% of the employees’ monthly salary after tax, social insurance, health insurance, and unemployment insurance deductions have been made.
Keeping official copies of documents
During the process of signing and implementing an employment contract, businesses are not allowed to retain any original copies of personal documents, degrees, and certificates belonging to employees.
Companies need to pay attention to the listed points to avoid violating legal regulations during the recruitment, contract signing, and implementation process. Currently, employees have access to labor laws and have a better understanding of their corresponding rights and obligations. Violating these regulations not only poses legal risks but also affects the reputation of the companies when employees disclose the violations on social media platforms.