New two-year collective agreement for 34,000 university employees approved

General pay rises will increase salaries by a total of 5.5%. In May, full-time university employees will receive a one-off payment of at least €400.

The main contractual parties on the employee side and Finnish Education Employers have approved the settlement reached last Friday for the universities’ new collective agreement for the period 1 April 2023–31 March 2025.

The collective agreement for the universities’ 34,000 employees was negotiated by JUKO, Pro Trade Union, the Trade Union for the Public and Welfare Sectors JHL, and Finnish Education Employers.

The general pay rise will raise salaries by a total of 5.5% over two years.

“Both general pay rises are going to occur during the first year of the agreement, which is a good thing for employees,” JUKO Head of Collective Bargaining Katja Aho says.

This year, a general pay rise will lift salaries by 3.5% from 1 September. In May, full-time university employees will be paid a one-off payment of 12.6% of monthly salary, but in any case no less than €400.

To receive the payment, the employee must be a salaried one, and their contract must have begun by 1 February this year and must not expire before the end of April and that the person is salaried also in May.

“A short break between fixed-term contracts, for example, will not stop them from getting the payment,” Aho says.

The one-off payment will also be made to staff on euro-denominated salaries, as well as to academy researchers and academy professors funded by the Academy of Finland.

The compensation paid to shop stewards and occupational safety representatives will increase by 6% from 1 September.

Next year, a general pay rise will increase salaries by 2% from 1 March.

Aho and Tarja Niemelä (Finnish Union of University Professors), chair of the JUKO University Advisory Board, consider it a positive development that as part of the principle of continuous negotiation, the parties have now committed to review the current state of the universities’ remuneration system and opportunities to improve it during the validity of the agreement.

“This is a way in which we try to make the universities more competitive in terms of salary and more attractive employers,” Aho and Niemelä say.

The members of Akava trade unions on behalf of whom JUKO negotiates work in roles such as research, teaching, administration and management.