Recruiting Top Talent in Italy

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Italian Top Talent

Recruitment can be a tricky business, especially when a company is venturing to unfamiliar countries and exploring new markets. This is where we come in to oversee the process for you – Bradford Jacobs’ expertise and over 20 years of experience in international recruitment services is indispensable for expansion into Italy.

Hiring the right talent in Italy to expand your company can result in a thriving business with numerous opportunities. However, the recruitment process can be complicated when you have no physical presence in Italy yet. Our PEO and EOR service can be the solution for your company.

The Recruitment Process in Italy

Employers in Italy can use a variety of recruitment methods to find the best applicants for their businesses, such as external recruitment methods (local job centres, recruitment agencies, job boards, LinkedIn, and other online advertising), as well as internal recruitment methods (such as providing career development opportunities and promotion to the company’s workforce).

From there, once the right candidate is found, the employer must follow thorough staffing and registration procedures, which include:

  • Registering with the Italian Tax Agency (Agenzia delle Entrate)
  • Registering with the National Social Security Institute (Istituto Nazionale Previdenza Sociale)
  • Registering for Insurance Against Accidents at Work (Istituto Nazionale per l’Assicurazione contro gli Infortuni sul Lavoro)
  • Registering with The Employment Agency (Provincia)
  • Creating employment contracts
  • Applying special expatriation status (if applicable)
  • Calculating monthly salary and creating pay slips
  • Researching available tax-free allowances
  • Submitting wage tax returns and national insurance forms
  • Corresponding with involved parties
  • Creating annual accounts, administration, and year-end statements
  • Creating payment schedule for wage tax, national insurances, and net wages

Legal Checks on Employees in Italy

When commencing the recruitment process in a foreign country, employers must consider their legal obligations regarding personal information. Employers must carry out background checks, which are only considered fair and legal if they relate directly to a job and are necessary for reaching a decision on recruitment.

These background checks may also only be carried out with the consent of the candidate, and all employee information must be protected according to GDPR and data protection laws.

Nevertheless, employers recruiting in Italy may ask for the following background checks or ‘information/pre-employment verification’ (following certain conditions):

  • Criminal record checks: a private employer does not have the right of access to an applicant’s criminal record. This kind of background check may also only be requested if it is in direct relation to the applicant’s future tasks and responsibilities in the job in question.
  • Employment history and qualifications checks: Employers have the right to verify statements made in their job application, such as the academic qualifications, and original copies of reference letters. In the case of reference checks, the employer cannot contact previous employers without the applicant’s consent.
  • Credit history check: A credit history check is only permissible if future duties involve being in a position of particular financial trust.
  • Health checks: Requests for a health certificate and/or a medical/physiological checkup may be admissible if the position requires a certain level of physical and/or mental fitness. However, this must occur with the applicant’s consent, and the results of the checks may only be shared with the applicant’s consent.
  • Immigration compliance: Employers are required to check that job applicants in Italy possess the necessary and immigration papers to work in Italy.

Personal data from rejected applicants may be kept only for six months, without the applicant’s express permission.

Basic Facts on Hiring in Italy

  • An employer’s questions during an interview are regulated and restricted by data protection legislation – they must directly relate to job specifications and requirements.
  • Terms and conditions of employment in Italy are regulated by national legislation, as well as trade unions and collective agreements.
  • For onboarding employees, you will need the following documentation: A social security number, a tax identification number, personal identification, a work permit, and a residence permit.
  • Employers must follow anti-discrimination laws throughout the process of recruitment, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race and ethnic origin, gender, religion or beliefs, disability, sexual orientation, and age.
  • Collective bargaining is an important part of recruitment in Italy. Collective bargaining mainly takes place at two levels – at industry level, and at company or district level. National-level agreements between unions and employers are also used to implement EU-level initiatives. Collective agreements are used to agree on employment conditions such as wages, working hours, leave, work organization and information rights. An ETUI study on collective bargaining in 2019 estimated that these types of agreements cover about 80% of all employees in Italy (at industry level). Industry agreements are valid for three years.
  • Administration and enforcement of employment requirements are governed by The Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare.
  • Regarding employment contracts, there is no statutory requirement to provide an employment contract in writing, as oral contracts are also valid, as well as no requirement for it to be in Italian.
  • However, for any employment contract to be valid, the employer must inform the employee of certain information, in writing, within 30 days of starting employment.
  • Standard employment contract types include indefinite and fixed-term contracts.
  • The standard working time is approximately 40 hours per week.
  • There is no minimum wage in Italy, but the average monthly salary is regulated by collective bargaining agreements and may differ according to the industry and sector.
  • Working hours should not exceed 48 hours in a week, including overtime. Overtime is usually compensated with an extra statutory pay of 10%. Compensation, however, varies according to the terms of the collective agreement or contract.
  • In a week, employees are entitled to at least one rest day.
  • Employers are obligated to with-hold and pay employees’ personal income tax and social security contributions monthly.
  • During employment termination, a written notice must be given to the employee in cases of all types of termination, except in cases of dismissal due to serious disciplinary reasons.
  • Notice periods are set in the collective agreement, and payment is given for unused holiday leave. Severance pay is also given in all cases of termination.
  • The maximum term of probationary periods in Italy is 6 months. The length, however, may vary according to the terms of the applicable collective bargaining agreement.