Collective bargaining in Finland has generally taken place at three levels; National, Industry and Enterprise. In a tripartite tradition, the high-level social partners have negotiated, in dialogue with the government, national framework agreements on wages and conditions of employment. National agreements at central level then served as a basis for sectoral negotiations – the dominant level in the sense that sectoral agreements are the legally applicable basis for employment contracts. Sectoral agreements may delegate certain issues that will be negotiated on the spot in company-level agreements. In recent years, there has been a trend towards more local negotiations, although decentralization takes place within the boundaries set by national and sectoral negotiations. (Asplund, 2007; Sippola, 2012). Given that the main employers` organisation at the highest level, the Finnish Industry Association (EC), withdrew from central negotiations in 2016, it is likely that decentralisation will increase in the future. Collective bargaining 2017/18 was therefore carried out directly at sector level, without prior agreement at central level. The report of the Ministry of Economy and Employment on the notion of « coverage of collective agreements in 2014 » (Ahtiainen, 2016) is a relevant national source. The report contains another calculation of the organizational density of employers, ranging from 73% (2008) and from 75% in 2014 to 62.6% (2008) and 66.2% in 2014. These latter figures are comparable to those reported by the ECS in the table below. Law on Cooperation within Enterprises; Collective agreements The detailed framework for working time in each sector is defined in collective agreements through sectoral negotiations between the social partners. The concretisation of working time in the various employment contracts is then negotiated at company level according to the provisions of collective agreements.
The Working Time Act regulates overtime and how it is to be paid and defines overtime as « work performed at the initiative of the employer in addition to normal working hours » (Working Time Act, 2011). The maximum allowable number of overtime hours is 138 hours per four months, provided that it does not exceed 250 hours per year. Management and labour may provide for derogations from these provisions in collective agreements, provided that such exceptional periods do not exceed 12 months and that the annual overtime limit is respected. . . .