Hire and manage employees in Poland
Hiring in Poland? Rippling can help your company grow globally without missing a beat. With Rippling, you can effortlessly onboard and manage new hires in Poland and across the world—whether you have a workforce of 2 or 2,000.
Avg Time to Hiring
Less than 5 minutes
Hire and manage employees
in Poland with Rippling
Onboard Polish employees and contractors in 90 seconds
Set up new hires in Poland with everything they need, from country-specific trainings to 3rd-party apps like Slack.
Manage HR, IT, and Finance in one system
Juggling multiple systems for your team? That creates silos and busy work. Rippling does it all—in a single system.
Automate your HR compliance work
Understanding and complying with Polish laws is hard work. Rippling does it for you.
The essential guide to hiring in Poland
Hiring for the first time in Poland—whether in Warsaw, Kraków, or anywhere else—can be an overwhelming endeavor if you're not up to speed on the country's employment laws and regulations. Our guide will walk you through the essential steps of the hiring process, including offer letters, onboarding, and benefits—to help you stay compliant with Polish labor laws.
Employer of Record (EOR) vs. entity
To start, you’ll need to decide whether it makes sense to hire Polish employees through an EOR or to establish your own local entity there. This depends on various factors, such as your company’s size, resources, and plans to scale.
- Legal entity in Poland. This process consists of registering with local authorities, opening a local bank account, and consulting with experts to ensure compliance with Polish tax and labor laws (including the Polish Social Insurance Institution). Poland’s National Labour Inspectorate doesn’t take labor complaints lightly, and mistakes can lead to delays.
- Polish EOR. An EOR is a third-party service that operates as an employer on a company’s behalf—meaning you don’t need to set up your own entity. A Polish EOR not only allows you to hire full-time Polish employees, but can handle all the legal requirements for complying with EU and Polish laws for payroll, term contracts, and benefits.
Now that you’ve got the basics down, here are some pros and cons of each:
Cost and implementation
Quicker to set up.
Start hiring within days instead of months.
You'll receive one invoice including all local social costs and taxes—no hidden fees.
Gets costlier as your headcount increases.
You must pay registration fees, and it can take up to six months to set up.
No fixed pricing—your expenses will differ based on the hiring costs and number of employees.
Becomes more cost-effective once you hit a certain number of employees in Poland.
Set up new hires faster—within 1-14 days, depending on the provider.
Supports large-scale expansion in a new market.
Manages your compliance, liability, and employment contracts.
Unable to customize certain policies to fit the needs of your business.
Your company is liable for all legal and compliance infractions—so you need internal legal resources and expert knowledge of Polish laws and tax regulations.
You have total control—you can tailor policies to the needs of your business.
Payroll and benefits
Quickly pay and insure employees around the world.
Taxes are filed for you.
Manually keep track of statutory deductions and employee entitlements for every hire.
Classifying Polish workers: employees vs. contractors
When hiring overseas, it’s crucial to make sure you’re classifying workers correctly. The kicker: there are different classification rules for every country—and different penalties for getting it wrong. In Poland, classifying an employee as a contractor could cost you anywhere from PLN 1,000 to PLN 30,000 on top of other penalties.
Here are some of the key differentiators between contractors and employees in Poland:
High level of worker control. Contractors are generally given more autonomy to determine how to complete the work and when to do it.
More direction from the employer. Employees are generally subject to more control and direction from their employer, who will provide guidance on how to perform the work and may set specific hours of work.
Equipment and tools are owned by the worker.
Equipment and tools are typically provided by the company.
Less integrated. Contractors tend to be independent, they’re more likely to work remotely, and they use their own tools and equipment.
Highly integrated. Employees are typically more integrated into the employer's organization, for example, they may work at the employer's premises.
No entitlement to benefits. Contractors are not entitled to the same benefits, leave entitlements, and protections as employees. They’re responsible for paying their own taxes.
Entitled to benefits. Employees are entitled to certain employment benefits and protections, such as minimum wage, overtime pay, and vacation pay. They may also be entitled to benefits like health insurance, retirement plans, and paid sick leave.
Time-bound engagement. Contractors are typically engaged for a specific project or period of time.
Indefinite engagement. Employees are generally hired for an indefinite period of time.
Risk of loss. Contractors may assume more risk and liability for the work they perform.
No risk of loss. Employees are generally protected from liability for work-related issues.
Non-exclusive services. Contractors cannot be contractually bound to a single company; they can provide their services to more than one organization.
Exclusive services. Employees can be contractually bound to provide services to just one company.
Check out our classification guide to make sure you’re staying compliant with Polish labor and employment laws.
Work permits for Polish employees
Before you can move a candidate in Poland forward in the hiring process, you need to make sure they are legally authorized to work there.
In Poland, there are two documents that foreign nationals and non-EU citizens are required to have: a work permit and a work visa. A work permit allows employees to work in Poland, and a work visa enables them to live there. And you guessed it—there are many different types of both. Let’s get into it:
- Work Permits:
- Type A: For foreign individuals offered employment by a Polish employer. A valid residence permit is required.
- Type B: For foreign individuals employed as board members.
- Type C: For foreign individuals sent to work in Poland through an intra-company transfer.
- Type D: For foreign individuals sent to work in Poland in export services by a foreign employer that does not have a Polish branch.
- Type E: For foreign individuals sent to work in Poland for other reasons.
- Type S: For foreign individuals working in agriculture or accommodation for a foreign employer.
- Work Visas:
- Type C: This visa is valid in the Schengen Area and permits the holder to stay in the territory of all of the Schengen countries (including Poland) for a maximum of 90 days during a 180-day period.
- Type D: A Type D national visa allows entry and stays in Poland for over 90 days (up to one year). It also permits travel within other Schengen Area Member States for up to 90 days during a 180-day period, while the visa is valid.
- Freelance/Entrepreneur Visa: The Freelance Visa in Poland is valid for two years and can be renewed before expiry. This visa requires the applicant to have Polish clients in addition to foreign clients.
- The EU Blue Card: The EU Blue Card is granted to highly qualified non-EU workers, allowing them to live and work in an EU country. Eligibility requires higher professional qualifications as well as an employment contract or firm job offer with a duration of at least one year.
Remember, if your candidate is an EU resident, they don’t need these documents—they’re automatically authorized to work in Poland. If you’re hiring non-EU candidates, check out our full guide to acquiring work permits and work visas in Poland.
New hire onboarding checklist
Once you’ve checked that an employee is allowed to work in Poland, it’s time to think through onboarding—an important part of the employee experience that sets the tone for the remainder of the employment relationship.
Let’s cover the basics for each stage of onboarding:
Before their first day
- Complete a background check.
- Send an offer letter (we’ll dive deeper into this in the next section).
- Complete the required paperwork.
- Enroll them in benefits.
- Add them to payroll.
- Order and configure their devices.
- Prepare any resources they’ll need.
- Schedule their orientation.
- Assign them an onboarding buddy.
- Send a welcome email.
On Day 1
- Make sure their workspace is ready to go.
- Send out a welcome email.
- Give them an agenda.
- Schedule a meeting with their manager.
- Host a get-to-know-you event with the team.
- Give them an office tour.
- Provide them with a list of contacts.
During their first 90 days
- Schedule training.
- Assign work and help them set goals.
- Schedule regular check-ins.
- Offer regular feedback.
- Seek their feedback on how to improve the experience.
With Rippling, onboarding employees in Poland is easy. Read our onboarding in Poland guide for more context around each of these action items.
What to include in an offer letter in Poland
Offer letters, also known as employment agreements, are an exciting step of the onboarding process, but you need to ensure they fulfill Polish requirements. Here’s a basic checklist of what to include in an offer letter for employees in Poland:
- Contact information, address, and phone number
- Contract term
- Position, job description, and start date
- Working hours
- Compensation and benefits
- Termination policy
- Confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements
- Non-compete and non-solicit agreements
Get a full breakdown of this checklist in our guide to creating offer letters compliantly in Poland.
NDAs and confidentiality agreements in Poland
A non-disclosure agreement (NDA) is a legal contract that prevents employees from disclosing confidential or proprietary company information to any third parties.
There are two versions of a Polish NDA: unilateral and bilateral. In a unilateral NDA (sometimes referred to as a non-mutual NDA) only one of the parties, typically the recipient of the confidential information, is obligated to maintain confidentiality. These agreements are common in employer-employee relationships.
On the other hand, bilateral NDAs (or mutual NDAs) are binding for both parties involved in the negotiations. These agreements apply when both parties are expected to share and protect confidential information; as in the case of mergers, acquisitions, and similar kinds of business deals.
So what information can be covered by an NDA in Poland? The Polish Unfair Competition Act protects:
- Trade secrets and proprietary information
- Financial information
- Customer information
- Employee information
- Intellectual property
Read our guide for more information on these protections, and see what makes an NDA enforceable in Poland.
Running background checks on Polish employees
A background check verifies your new hire’s credentials and helps eliminate the risks of bringing on a potential threat to your company. In Poland, the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Poland’s Protection of Personal Data Act strictly regulate the handling of private data. Here are some of the common types of background checks in Poland, along with some other options you may want to consider:
Common background checks
Less common background checks
Credit reports (depends on role)
Social media profiles (depends on role)
Driving records (depends on role)
Medical records (depends on role)
Criminal record (depends on role)
Get more information on background checks in Poland—and mistakes to avoid—in our full guide.
Paying employees in Poland
So you’ve decided whether to use an EOR or your own entity. Now it’s time to select a payroll solution.
If you’re running payroll for employees in Poland for the first time, it’s important to get it right. Missing a step could result in legal action from the Polish National Revenue Administration.
Once you’ve picked a global payroll solution, here are the next steps:
- Determine your workers’ employment status.
- Collect your new hires’ Polish payroll information.
- Choose to pay in your local currency or Polish zloty (PLN).
- Run payroll.
Read our detailed guide on paying employees in Poland.
Mandatory employee benefits in Poland
The Polish Labor Code of 26 June 1974 (known in Polish as the “Kodyks Pracy”) regulates the mandatory benefits for employees in Poland. The benefits required by the Polish Labor Code are statutory minimums—so you must offer these to avoid legal issues. However, you’re always welcome to offer additional benefits.
Many changes to Polish labor law are being implemented in 2023, but here are the benefits currently required in Poland:
- Pension insurance. Both employees and employers contribute to the employee’s pension insurance. The overall rate is 19.52% of the employee’s assessment base, with employee and employer each covering 9.76%—with a cap of PLN 208,050.
- Disability insurance. Both employees and employers contribute to the employee’s disability insurance, with the employer paying most of the total rate of 8% of the assessment base. The employee’s contribution is at a rate of 1.5% and the employer's is at a rate of 6.5%, but since 2023, there is a cap of PLN 208,050.
- Work accident insurance. Employers are required to contribute to the employee’s work accident insurance, and employees are not. The rate you must contribute varies between 0.67% and 3.33% of the assessment base and depends on the type of activities the employee’s job entails.
- Employee Capital Plan (PPK). PPK is a retirement savings scheme—to which the employee, the employer, and the government contribute—that aims to provide income additional to pension payments once the employee has retired. Employees can make withdrawals from their fund at any time, and employees under the age of 55 are automatically enrolled but can opt out.
- Occupational Health and Safety training and medical examinations. Before an employee is allowed to work in Poland, they must undergo Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) training and preventative medical examinations—all provided by the employer.
- Sick leave. There are two types of paid sick leave in Poland: typical sick leave and long-term sick leave.
- Holiday entitlements. Full-time employees in Poland are entitled to 20 working days of holiday leave per calendar year if they’ve worked for the employer for up to 10 years, and 26 working days if they’ve been with the employer for more than 10 years. Unused leave days are carried over to the following calendar year and upon termination of employment, employers pay out any unused days.
- Statutory holidays. According to the Non-working Days Act of 1951, there are currently 13 public holidays in Poland, for which employees are entitled to paid time off.
Each of these mandatory benefits has additional nuances—read our guide on offering benefits in Poland to make sure you’re aware of them.
Managing remote employees’ computers and apps
When you hire employees in Poland to do remote work, you’ll need to make sure you set them up with all the apps, tools, and integrations your company uses.
With Rippling, you can set up, manage, and disable all employee apps, like Google Workspace and Slack, in one central platform. We make setting up and securing employees’ accounts—and ensuring they all have the access and permissions they need—a painless process.
Learn more about managing remote employee devices in our guide.
Protecting company IP in Poland
Your employees in Poland will have access to sensitive company information, and if any of that information falls into the wrong hands, it can put your company’s competitive advantage on the line. That’s why it’s important to understand Poland’s unique IP laws and regulations.
Here are some things to know about IP ownership in Poland:
- In Poland, NDAs are enforceable.
- Polish employers have the right to obtain employee patents.
- You can legally enforce IP assignment agreements.
- Contractors own the copyright to their work by default.
- IP ownership clauses must be localized to Poland.
- The moral rights of an author cannot be transferred or waived.
Our IP ownership and rights in Poland guide breaks down each of these points.
Complying with Polish labor laws
Maintaining compliance with Polish labor laws is arguably one of the most important aspects of the hiring process. With Poland’s strict employee protections, failure to comply can result in steep penalties.
Here are a few of the regulations you need to keep in mind when hiring in Poland:
- At-will employment doesn’t exist in Poland. You can only terminate an employee without notice for “just cause,” meaning you have to be able to prove serious misconduct.
- Poland has strong anti-discrimination protections. The Polish Constitution strictly prohibits discrimination against individuals based on their sex, age, disability, religion, nationality, race, political views, trade union membership, or any other factors.
- Companies operating in Poland must ensure pay transparency. In 2023, the EU adopted new rules on pay transparency. For example, employers will have to take action if their gender pay gap is more than 5%.
For a more thorough list of labor laws—and the penalties for breaking them—check out our guide on Polish labor law compliance.
Terminating employees in Poland
As mentioned in the last section, you can only terminate employees in Poland for just cause, like unsatisfactory performance, misconduct, or because their job no longer needs to be performed. These terms need to be laid out in the employment contract, including statutory requirements for severance pay, notice periods, and acceptable reasons for terminating employees without notice.
If you decide to let an employee in Poland go, you need to adhere to the country’s specific notice periods, based on the probation period or length of time they were at the company:
Length of service
Less than 6 months with a given employer
6 months to less than 3 years
3 years or more
Probationary period - less than two weeks
Probationary period - 2 weeks to 3 months
Probationary period - more than 3 months
Disclaimer: Rippling and its affiliates do not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal, or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal, and accounting advisors before engaging in any related activities or transactions.