Slovenia has a comprehensive social security system primarily covering retirement and healthcare. Employees contribute more to the system than employers, and it is advised to consult with employee before offering supplemental benefits because many employees do not wish to incur the expense. Perks on the other hand span a wide variety of options that employees do appreciate.
The average benefit cost for employers is about €100-€200 per annum per employee.
Mandatory employee benefits in Slovenia are part of the country’s comprehensive social security system which includes pensions and healthcare. Supplementary employee benefits in Slovenia include voluntary pension plans, personal accident insurance and life insurance. Supplemental health insurance is available, but it is not common for companies to provide it. Employee perks in the country include a fuel card, bonuses, meal subsidies, educational stipends and mobile phones.
Mandatory Employee Benefits in Slovenia
The comprehensive social security system in Slovenia includes: pensions and disability, health insurance and health care, unemployment insurance, parental insurance and family benefits, and social assistance. Both employees (total 22,10%) and employers (16,10%) pay (contributions and taxes) into social security.
Slovenia runs three-tier pension system with the first pillar as PAYG scheme. The contribution rate for the public pension system is 24,35% of gross wages; employees pay 15,5%, employers contribute 8,85% and the self-employed must cover the total amount.
The second pillar consists of occupational pensions that are mandatory for certain sectors (public service and banking sectors, as well as for particularly hazardous occupations) and voluntary for others private sectors (different versions of pension schemes).
Voluntary personal savings constitute the third pillar.
The compulsory health insurance (CHI) scheme covers the whole population, either on the basis of employment and self-employment or residence (insured person and their family members). The insured persons are guaranteed by the Law the following: the payment of health services, sick pay during temporary absence from work and the reimbursement of travel expenses tied to obtaining health services.
CHI does not always cover all health care services and not in full price. The services granted to be covered in full price by compulsory insurance are, for e.g.: all health programs for children and youth (children are completely covered up to 18 years) and also students as long as they attend school, family planning, occupational diseases, malignant diseases and other diseases, medical services related to donation and transplantations of tissues and organs, long term nursing care.
In the cases of all other services, the compulsory health insurance covers just certain percentages of their full prices. The difference to the full price shall either be covered by the insured person himself, or can be covered by the voluntary health insurance policy.
Supplementary Employee Benefits in Slovenia
Voluntary supplementary pension plans may be established as collective insurance with an employer, who partially or completely funds the insurance for all his employees, or by entering an individual insurance retirement plan.
Employer’s contributions to supplementary pension funds are deductible for purposes of both corporate and personal income tax and social security contributions. An employer paying the contributions to a pension plan can lower his tax base, and the contributions are not included in the base for the Social Security contributions. Pension contributions from both the employer and the employee benefit from tax relief up to 5,844% of the gross wage of the employee, and are capped at approximately 2.800 € per year and employee. This maximum also includes premiums paid by the employee to individual pension schemes, with the employer having first priority to the scope of tax relief.
For a plan to receive tax favorable treatment, it must cover at least 51% of the all employees of the sponsoring employer and be authorized by the Ministry of Labor.
The third pillar – Premiums paid from this pillar are subject to tax relive and preferences, which are lower than similar incentives of other occupational schemes. Tax incentives for individual pension insurance include only the personal income tax relief, but not other social contributions, so due to mentioned reason this pillar is not very common in Slovenia.
Voluntary health insurance can roughly be divided in supplementary and additional. Supplementary insurance covers participation costs and additional health insurance consists of various insurance products related to additional health care (specialist examinations, unstandardized dental care, rehabilitation costs after the accident, and hospital specialist activity.
It is not very common for companies to provide supplemental medical benefits.
Other voluntary benefits available as insurance products in the market
Travel Health Insurance
This covers costs of medical treatments during travel and stay abroad. Companies typically conclude this coverage only for business travels; 93% of companies provide this insurance.
Personal Accident Insurance
Other than the benefits provided by the social security system, some companies provide personal accident insurance with coverage for accident death and permanent disability as main coverages and in a form of insurance policy. The employer typically covers the cost but it is possible to agree reductions from the employee’s monthly salary and include their family members.
Group life insurance products concluded by companies are in the most cases without saving component. Insurance beneficiary in case of death can be company or person (family members, etc.) Premium is tax recognized expense for the company but in the case when company is entitled as beneficiary the payment is treated as company income and due to that tax base also increases in the payment year.
The most common perks as a part of typical employer benefit practices are the following:
- Company car – A company car is typical for management and other staff who require transportation to perform their work.
- Fuel card – Employees with a company car are entitled to a fuel card. The fuel card can be used only in Slovenia or also in the other countries.
- Transportation Allowance – there is a compulsory payment for transportation costs, which accounts to 0,18 EUR to kilometer (or the cost of a monthly pass for public transport).
- Bonus – Common bonuses to include in employee contracts are:
- 13th salary, considered a gratuity and not required by law
- Christmas bonus
- Jubilee bonus, amount usually dependent on length of service
- Performance-based bonus
Twenty percent of all companies provide jubilee awards, and 59% provide service awards. Typical anniversary rewards are for 10, 20, or 30 years. The target payout is a % of the base salary and linked to the pay grade. Jubilee awards are similar, but may celebrate a special anniversary such as 25 or 50 years.
- Meal Subsidy – compulsory payment for lunch costs for a minimum of 4,12 EUR per workday. Some companies subsidize canteen meals, instead providing a mandatory meal allowance or vouchers, which can be up to EUR 6,12 per working day (tax-exempt).
- Discounted company products – 19% of companies allow for granting of product discounts.
- Education – The majority (81%) of companies provide or assist with employee development in the form of conferences and training courses.
- Mobile phones – Almost all companies (98%) provide mobile phones to employees.
In recent years, companies have begun to offer extra benefits to their employees, including flexible hours for working mothers, paternity leave, and study leave for work-related courses.
Slovenia launched a family friendly enterprise certification scheme – Certifikat Družini prijazno podjetje – in 2007, in partnership with the non-profit Eqvilib Institute. The scheme is based on the European family audit system developed by Berufundfamilie in Germany, and also used in Austria, Italy and Hungary.
Family Friendly Enterprise certificate is based on the CSR principle of employee – management cooperation with an emphasis on work-life balance. FFE certificate is a long-term consultation process, which provides positive effects that go beyond reconciling work and private life of employees and clearly reflect competitive advantages with positive economic effects for enterprise and long-term effects for the society. Over 250 Slovenian companies and organizations enter the certification, and certificate holders employ over 70,000 employees.