In December 2015, the Flemish government created a new employment regime for the hospitality industry: the flexi-job. Extremely well received from the get-go, the concept was extended to other sectors on 1 January 2018. As a result, more and more employees and employers are enjoying the benefits of the scheme.
What is a flexi-job?
Flexi-jobs are meant for people who already have a job or are retired. Now, they can work as many hours on the side as they want and earn extra money on favourable terms.
What are the advantages of a flexi-job?
As an employer, you only pay 25% of the employer contributions. Moreover, there is no limit to the number of hours your flexi-job worker may work. As for employees, they receive pay that is not taxed, which means that their gross wages are their net wages.
A flexi-job comes with a flexible wage: as an employer you are free to set the rate, but the minimum hourly wage is 10.08 euros (9.36 euros in wages + 0.72 euro in holiday allowance), regardless of the function. In your wage calculations, don't forget to include the sectoral supplements (e.g. for hospitality) for holidays and Sundays. Both are also taxed at 25%.
The prerequisites for a flexi-job?
Prerequisites for employees
If you want to work as a flexi-job worker, you must have worked at least 4/5 of the full-time work regime in the penultimate quarter. For example: in order to work under the flexi-job regime in October, November and December 2019, you need to have had an employment contract with an employer (or multiple employers) in the period January, February, March 2019 for at least 4/5 of a full-time job.
Prerequisites for pensioners
In order to work under the flexi-job regime, a pensioner needs to have retired 2 quarters before the start of the flexi-job. In other words: to start in a flexi-job in January 2020, a pensioner must have retired before October 2019. Someone who worked at least 4/5 of the full-time work regime until 31 December 2019 would be able to start immediately.
Prerequisites for employers
Good news: the employee prerequisite (worked at least 4/5 of the time in the penultimate quarter) is automatically checked when filling in the Dimona declaration. If, after submitting the declaration directly or through a payroll services provider, you receive a 'Dimona accepted' message in return, it means that everything is in order.
Not quite sure if a person meets the prerequisites? Contact the social security (NSSO/RSZ) by email at email@example.com or by phone on 02 509 59 59. Based on the Belgian national registry number, they will check whether your future flexi-job worker meets all the criteria.
Note! In the quarter when you hire your flexi-job worker, that person may not have another employment contract with your company – for at least 4/5 of the full-time regime.
In which sectors can you hire flexi-job workers?
Initially introduced for the hospitality industry, the flexi-job regime has since been extended to the following sectors:
- Department stores
- Large retail stores
- Independent retailers
- Trade in food products
- Medium-sized foods business operators
- Hairdressers and beauty care
- Bakeries and confectioneries
- Temporary employment
- Hotel business
How do you hire a flexi-job worker?
1. Draw up a framework agreement and an employment contract
In the first place, provide a written and signed framework agreement. There cannot be a flexi-job without a framework agreement. Note that this is not an employment contract, however.
What should a framework agreement include?
- The identity of both parties
- A concise description of the function(s)
- The flexible wage
- How the flexi-job employment contract needs to be presented by the employer to the flexi-job worker (in writing or orally) and the deadline for doing so
- A description of the conditions that the flexi-job worker must meet
In addition, you also need an employment contract which can be given either orally or in writing. It is drawn up for a fixed term or a specific work, full-time or part-time, with a fixed or variable schedule.
2. Request a social security number
You need a social security (NSSO/RSZ) number in order to recruit staff. Contact the Employers Identification Service Wide on www.socialsecurity.be (FR). Afterwards, you will need to register on the social security portal.
3. Declare the flexi-job worker in the Dimona
You register the flexi-job worker (FR) for an entire period (max. one quarter) or a day. With the latter option, you enter the start and end times, but you don't have to sign a written employment contract. The contract is necessary for the full period declaration, however.
4. Declare the flexi-job worker in the DmfA
The DmfA declaration (FR) is the quarterly electronic declaration of wage and working time data. This must be submitted by the end of the month following the quarter at the latest. For example: the declaration for the first quarter must be received before April 30th.
If you are active in one of the sectors that are eligible for flexi-jobs, you, too, can benefit from this advantageous way of recruiting staff. The regime is also ideal to meet high staffing needs in a flexible way.