How Can I Manage Short-time Work in Personio?


Personio offers certain settings and functions to correctly help you reflect employees in short-time work. In this article, you will learn how to store the key data relating to short-time work in the employee information, how to adjust salaries, and how to record the so-called "Kurzarbeitergeld" in the employee profile. 


Adjusting the Employee Information

Use sections and attributes to enter the key data for short-time work in your employees' digital employee file, such as the start and end date of the short-time work period, or the percentage that is applied by the company in reducing the remuneration. These attributes will be extremely helpful, as they will also be available for filtering data, and for automated reminders. Carry out the following steps to set up new attributes. You can then fill these by doing a data import.

  1. Creating a new section called "Short-time work"
    Under Settings > Employee information, insert a new section called "Short-time work" and add the following attributes: 

    Attribute Name Attribute Type
    Short-time work agreement List of options: yes | no
    Start of short-time work


    End of short-time work


    Remuneration reduction (in %)

    Number (up to two decimal places)

    Add any further attributes relevant to your company as needed. Details on creating custom sections and attributes can be found here

    Since by default only administrators can access newly created sections, we recommend that you review the access rights under Settings > Employee roles > Access rights and adjust them as necessary, so that, for example, HR managers too can view the details stored here.

    For a better overview, and to have the short-time work information readily available when doing the payroll, we recommend adding these attributes in the preparatory payroll as well. 

  2. Preparing the data import

    To populate the new attributes for each employee with initial data, it is worth doing a data import – particularly in larger companies. To prepare for a smooth import later, we recommend the following steps:

    (a) Adjusting the employee list (optional): Click on the navigation bar on the left to select the employee list and adjust the columns so that the list contains the following attributes at a minimum: 
    First name, Last name, Email, and the attributes mentioned above relating to short-time work.

    If you want to save this view and have it ready to quickly bring it up again later, click on the disc icon at the top of the screen. Note that this function requires the Productivity Plus plan


    (b) Exporting the relevant attributes & data collection
    Export the view as configured above in .xlsx format, using the button with the three dots on the top right. This file will now serve as a template to collect the relevant data. Open the file and fill in the relevant columns for all employees in short-time work, and then save the file locally.
  3. Importing the data
    To upload the file to your account, go to the navigation bar on the left and select Imports. To carry out the import, follow these instructions.


Adjusting the Salaries

This section describes how to enter the reduced remuneration for the duration of the short-time work period and the so-called "short-time allowance" in the profile of the respective employee. 

  1. Reducing the monthly salary
    To adjust the fixed salary for your employees, navigate to the employee profile, select the Salary tab, click on Edit and then on Change salary. Under Valid from, enter the date from which the salary change applies. Then enter the reduced number of working hours per week. Personio automatically calculates the effective salary based on these entries.
    If you would like to make multiple adjustments at the same time, you have the option to update the weekly hours by doing an import. Learn how here.

    Note: Adjusting the weekly working hours affects the calculation of your FTEs.

    For employees on hourly salaries, it is sufficient to apply the reduction to the hours worked either when the attendance is recorded, or directly when the pay is calculated under the Salary tab.

  2. Entering the Kurzarbeitergeld (KUG)
    The specific KUG amount has to be calculated for each employee. The German Federal Employment Agency has published a range of information and leaflets on this topic. We recommend that you enter the KUG in Personio monthly for each employee as one-off remuneration payments. Learn how here
    With this method, you will be able to run evaluations of the scope and development of the KUG using custom reports
  3. Short-time work with a work reduction of 100% ("Kurzarbeit Null")
    If, as part of short-time work, an employee's working hours are reduced to zero, you have the option to set the employee account on leave for that period. As a result, salary payments and recurring compensation will be reduced accordingly or, for fully suspended months, set to zero. One-off payments – also KUG amounts – will still be shown in the preparatory payroll.

    Note: For employees who are on leave, Personio will automatically reduce their vacation entitlement pro-rata for each fully suspended calendar month. If necessary, you can correct this by adjusting the balance manually.


Tracking Working Hours

You need to make the following settings if you want employees on short-time work to record their daily working hours:

  1. Access rights
    Go to Settings > Employee roles > Access rights to check whether the employees concerned have the necessary proposal permission for their own data in the Attendance section. Read more about how to configure access rights here.
  2. Approvals
    If attendance periods that employees have entered into Personio need to be confirmed before they are stored in the system, e.g. by a supervisor, it is important that a corresponding ruleset is defined in Settings > Approvals > Attendance.
  3. Work Schedules

    The employees should be assigned an appropriate work schedule.

    Warning: The work schedule directly influences the calculation of leave entitlements. If short-time work does not also entail reduced leave entitlements, an employee's work schedule should be configured according to their working hours before they were put onto short-time work.

  4. Tracking of Working Hours

    Once everything is set up, employees are able to enter their daily working hours into their own profiles under the Attendance tab. Click here for further information on this process.

    Use Custom reports of the Timeframe type to generate individual evaluations of the hours worked per month.


Setting Up Reminders

Use the date attributes created under Chapter 1 for the start and end of the short-time work period to set up automated reminders for yourself or other employees in charge of payroll. For example, you may want to set up a reminder to change an employee's salary back to the original value two weeks before their short-time work period ends. See this article to learn how to set up and manage reminders. 





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