Compensation recommendation 2022

The following compensation recommendations concern those work tasks and commissions that are not included in the academic’s job description and that are often carried out outside of the employment relationship.

The earnings of an academic are generated from many separate sources of income. In addition to salary, grants and other monetary compensations, an academic also earns money, e.g., from teaching, writing and different types of public presentations. For many academics, income other than wages from employment represents a significant part of the generated income.

Compensation is often open to negotiation. The basis for the compensation recommendation is that academics – including early career researchers – are, in terms of their authored work, public presentations and knowledge provision, specialised experts in their own field. This expertise should not be provided at bargain rates or without remuneration. It is good to remember that a request for proper compensation also promotes the position of other academics and those who are self-employed by various means.

It is also important to consider the party commissioning a presentation, article or other expert work when formulating the compensation request. Some organisations have highly established compensation practices, which make it more difficult to negotiate on the individual level. Furthermore, different organisations have varying levels of resources. For example, small village associations cannot be invoiced the same way as public sector parties, companies or trade unions. Generally speaking, any tasks commissioned outside of the employment relationship and the related compensation are, however, always negotiated and agreed on separately.

As a starting point, a minimum of three hours should be set for any work carried out at an hourly rate, even though the actual engagement or similar might take less time.  This ensures that the compensation takes into consideration the preparation time required for the task.

A lecturer, educator or other similar expert shall receive kilometre and per diem allowances in accordance with the standard allowance practices confirmed by the Tax Administration. The expert shall also be assured a cancellation fee and reasonable compensation for preparation work done in such cases when the appearance is cancelled for reasons beyond the expert’s control.

The copyrights of academics are similarly a topical issue. Copyright can concern texts, appearances or text borrowing. Copyright issues arise in, for example, online teaching, lecture taping or recording and reuse.

Compensation for written work

The minimum compensation for an experienced expert who provides a layperson’s text, a requested article in a non-fiction book, a newspaper article or a similar text with a precisely defined theme, length, due date and other characteristics, is EUR 195,60 per sheet, but at least EUR 802 for one individual text.

If the compensation is determined by the length of the text, the compensation should be at least EUR 148 per sheet. A sheet here refers to approximately 2,200 characters (with spaces) or approximately 28–30 lines of text.

When an expert drafts abridged versions or reviews of scientific works or other publications, the determination of the compensation shall also take into consideration the length and quality of the publication being abridged or reviewed.

The drafting of a scientific text is more demanding than a layperson’s text and often takes more time. This should be considered in the compensation for written work. The compensation for scientific texts can be, for example, double that of the compensation for the aforementioned type of layperson’s text.

Commissioned research and reports

In addition to the Government’s analysis, assessment and research activities, the ministries order a lot of preliminary studies for legislative undertakings, reports, progress summaries and commission summary analyses of different databases. Municipalities, towns, bureaus and organisations also commission a lot of studies to support their own decision making. Among others, the City of Helsinki extensively utilises the expertise of researchers and Akava Works constantly orders studies from researchers on different issues related to working life.

Some of the commissions are more urgent than others, so this should be taken into consideration in the compensation request. In addition to the timetable, the compensation request should also include consideration for the extent of the material, the amount of work required for gathering or compiling the material, multilingualism or the gathering of international reference materials, the use of time, for example, for possible interviews, and the desired extent of the commissioned final report.

Research studies and reports should ideally be done within an employment relationship based on, for example, a monthly salary that, for expert work, should be a minimum of EUR 3,500. A salary paid within an employment relationship includes the salary-related expenses handled by the employer.

If work is done on an hourly basis outside of an employment relationship, the hourly rate for an expert with a second cycle degree (Master’s or corresponding degree) is a minimum of EUR 44.40 per hour. A compensation request presented by an expert with a doctorate should ideally be no less than double the compensation of an expert with a Master’s degree, and a request presented by a docent should be double that of the expert with a doctorate. Thus, the minimum hourly rate for work done by experts with different levels of education and experience are recommended as follows:

Level of education

Master’s degree holder

Doctor

Docent

Hourly rate of work (min.) €44.40 €88.80 €177.60

Alternatively, the hourly rate for work can be determined by dividing one’s own monthly salary or the monthly salary payable for a similar level of task within an employment relationship by 100. In this case, the compensation should, however, still comply with the aforementioned minimum levels in accordance with the relevant education and experience.

As a starting point, a minimum of three hours should be set for any work carried out at an hourly rate, even though the actual engagement or similar might take less time. This ensures that the compensation takes into consideration the preparation time required for the task.

If the expert or commissioned party pays their own salary-related expenses, such as taxes, pension and social security contributions, which are typically paid by an employer within an employment relationship, this must also be taken into consideration in the compensation request. To take these expenses into consideration, the compensation request should be increased by no less than 20%.

The compensation for all commissioned research and reports is agreed upon in the contract between the two parties. At the time this recommendation is being drawn up, there is no unified policy for compensation from Ministries or organisations.  The required working hours and extent of the work also affect the level of the compensation request. It is sensible to request a sufficiently high compensation and negotiate from there, if necessary.

Expert statements for Parliament

Parliamentary committees pay, upon invoice, a reasonable compensation for written statements provided by scientific or other specialised experts. Compensation is not paid to the officials who are heard as experts as part of their job nor to such experts who are heard as representatives of an organisation or other corporate body. Currently, the amount of the compensation for those with a Doctorate is EUR 780 and, for others, EUR 710.

The compensation can be paid 1.5 or 2 times the basic fee on the basis of verification by the committee secretary in cases where the subject of the statement is exceptionally broad or highly demanding. Compensations are paid twice per month in accordance with the salary payment schedule.

Experts who are invited to committee meetings are, upon request, paid a compensation for their travel and accommodation expenses. After the travel invoice is verified by the Committee Office Secretary, it will be forwarded to financial management.

Further information is available at the website of the Parliament of Finland (in Finnish).

Royalties

Royalties are typically tied to the revenue (excluding VAT) earned by the publisher: the author receives a pre-defined percentage of that revenue.  See more of the recommendation of the Finnish Association of Non-fiction writers.

Are you already a member of the Finnish Association of Non-fiction writers? The criterion for membership consists of one or more published non-fiction books, a textbook or otherwise published non-fiction work that is equivalent to approximately 200 printed pages.  The membership fee is EUR 81 per year and in return the members receive advice on matters related to publishing agreements and copyrights, and training, events and member gatherings that support non-fiction writing.  The Finnish Association of Non-fiction Writers also awards grants.

Compensation for presentations

If the compensation for presentations is not confirmed beforehand, the following factors can be considered as a basis for the compensation request:

The duration of the presentation and preparation time are considered as part of the request. Generally speaking, the duration of a presentation is good to define as being a minimum of one hour, even if the actual presentation takes less time. The applicable multipliers used by Akava are shown below. Please note that, for the purposes of this table, only the basic hourly rate for preparation time is shown. In addition to the preparation time, the invoice should include the time (at least one hour) required for the presentation/lecture.

Presentation, hour(s) on the same topic 1 2 3 4
Preparation multiplier 5 4 3 3
Hours, for which the basic hourly rate are paid 5 8 9 12

When the presentation is recorded or a lecture (or similar) is held in a language other than one’s mother tongue, the compensation can be increased as follows:

  • If the material or recording of the presentation is published on the commissioning party’s website, the compensation should be increased by at least 100% for each month of use of each material or recording.
  • If the lecture is held in a language other than one’s mother tongue, the basic compensation should be increased by approximately 10–20%.

If a recording is made of the presentation or similar, an agreement will need to be made clearly in advance concerning the period and method of use, the access and storage site (e.g., Moodle) and the separate compensation to be paid. Correspondingly, if the recording is intended to be permanently relinquished to the use of the commissioning party, this shall be agreed on separately. The same is also true for teaching materials.

The basic hourly rate can be determined by dividing one’s own monthly salary or the monthly salary payable for a similar level of task within an employment relationship by 100. An expert who holds a Master’s degree should, however, be paid at least EUR 44.40/hour, a Doctor at least EUR 88.80/hour and a Docent EUR 177.70/hour.

For participation in a panel discussion, a compensation request could be, e.g., EUR 150–250 depending on the number of participants and the amount of work involved. If asked to serve as the chairperson of a panel discussion, it would be wise to set the compensation at a minimum of EUR 300 due to the amount of work involved.

If the appearance is cancelled, near to the agreed date, for reasons beyond the control of the presenter, half of the compensation can be requested for any preparation work that has already been done. It is a good idea to discuss and agree on cancellation terms and practices ahead of time.

In addition to the presentation compensation, the presenter should also invoice for kilometre and per diem allowances in accordance with the standard allowance practices confirmed by the Tax Administration.

Example:

You have been commissioned to give a presentation of one hour (or a half hour). It takes five hours to prepare for the presentation. First, start by calculating your own basic hourly rate based on the level of your education and experience (or alternatively, divide your monthly salary by one hundred). The amount of the compensation is six times the basic hourly rate. In this case, the minimum compensation request can be as follows:

Master’s degree holder 6 hrs x €44.40 = €266.40.

Doctor 6 hrs x €88.80 = €532.80.

Docent 6 hrs x €177.60 = €1,065.60.

If the recording of the presentation or similar will be published on the commissioning party’s website, increase the compensation request by 100% per usage month for each recording. If you give the presentation in a language other than your own mother tongue, increase the compensation request by 10–20%. Also, invoice the commissioning party for any kilometre and per diem allowances.

Appearance on TV or radio

The requested compensation can be based on the rates defined in the collective agreement known as the Yhtyneet-sopimus. The Yhtyneet-sopimus agreement regarding matters on compensation and terms of employment has been signed by the Finnish Broadcasting Company and the Finnish Association of Non-fiction writers, among others. The agreement determines the amounts of compensation paid for producing a radio or television programme and for appearing in a programme.

According to the Yhtyneet-sopimus, compensation is not paid for statements, interviews and announcements of news nature that are related to the duties, appointment or position held by the presenter either permanently or temporarily. The following text consists of appearances listed in the Yhtyneet-sopimus that are typical for a university researcher or teacher.

Audio work

Scientific or popular presentation and book presentations up to 5 minutes EUR 209.60–255.71 and for each following minute EUR 18.23–22.24.

Interview up to 5 minutes EUR 59.07 and for each following minute EUR 6.13.

Discussion participant up to 10 minutes EUR 254.63 and for each following minute EUR 13.11. The above compensation is paid to participants, unless otherwise agreed in writing, based on the length of the programme’s discussion component and divided by the number of participants in the discussion. If there are more than five participants in the discussion, the compensation is one fifth of the total compensation.

Audiovisual work

Statements and interviews up to 5 minutes EUR 90.10 and for each following minute EUR 8.28.

Expert opinions and presentations up to 5 minutes EUR 247.86 and for each following minute EUR 22.43.  An expert opinion requires a pre-assigned question, and addressing it requires preparation and research.  An expert is a person who has completed their doctoral studies in the field in question or otherwise obtained a vast amount of experience in the fields in question.

Discussion participants up to 10 minutes EUR 352.48 and for each following minute EUR 5.52. The above compensation is paid to participants, unless otherwise agreed in writing, based on the length of the programme’s discussion component, divided by the number of discussion participants. If there are more than five participants in the discussion, the compensation is one fifth of the total compensation and at minimum EUR 86.36.

Other expert work

The price for expert work or consultation at an hourly rate should correspond to the monthly salary of a similar level specialised expert divided by 100, or at least the minimum amount for hourly work as presented earlier (Master’s degree holder EUR 44.40/hour, Doctor EUR 88.80/hour and Docent EUR 177.60/hour).

Compensation for training can also be assessed in accordance with one’s own experience, the amount of preparation needed and the size of the group in question.

If several educators, lecturers or other experts have been hired for the same commissioned event, the basic compensation cannot be divided between them. Each educator or expert must be paid a separate compensation for their individual work input and taking into consideration their individual amount of work, such as lessons, the preparation time and other possible tasks.

If the lecture is recorded or teaching materials from the lecture are otherwise utilised more broadly, an agreement will need to be made clearly in advance concerning the period of use, purpose of use, the publication and storage site of the recording or materials (e.g., Moodle) and the related separate compensation to be paid to the expert. An example of reasonable compensation for the continued use of a recording or material is the basic compensation increased by 100% for each month of use per material. The author/creator can, if desired, also agree to a lump sum compensation.

If the expert or commissioned party pays their own salary-related expenses, such as taxes, pension and social security contributions, which are typically paid by an employer within an employment relationship, this must also be taken into consideration in the compensation request. To take these expenses into consideration, the compensation request should be increased by no less than 20%.

Travel costs

According to Akava’s recommendation, it is recommended that the client pay the travel costs in accordance with the collective agreement concerning travelling expenses of public servants and state employees. These costs include travel tickets and their acquisition costs, local travel, travel equipment costs, airport tax and transportation costs and daily allowance, hotel fees, etc.

 

Useful links

Salaries and work compensation in taxation (advanced instructions (in Finnish)

VAT for small-scale businesses

Pensions for the self-employed: When do I need insurance? (the Finnish Centre for Pensions)

Publishing contract

Publishing contract recommendation of the Finnish Association of Non-fiction writers (in Finnish)

Compensation recommendations

Akava’ compensation recommendations (in Finnish)

Finnish Reading Center’s compensation recommendations for writers (in Finnish)

Association of Freelance Journalists in Finland – 2019 guidelines for freelance pricing

Authorship compensation recommendation of the Finnish Association of Non-fiction writers (in Finnish)

Presentation compensation recommendation of the Finnish Association of Non-fiction writers (in Finnish)

Yhtyneet-sopimus (in Finnish)

Wage comparison

Oikotie.fi wage comparison (in Finnish)

Wage comparison (in Finnish)

Akavaaka, Akava’s statistical summary, spring 2017 (in Finnish)

Copyright

Kopiraittila (copyright info in Finnish)

Korpela, Jukka K.: Copyright: answers to FAQ (in Finnish)

Sanasto, Finnish literary copyright society

Association of Freelance Journalists in Finland, ABCs of copyright (in Finnish)

Publishing contract recommendation of the Finnish Association of Non-fiction writers (in Finnish)

Tekijanoikeus.fi (in Finnish)

Copyright Council