Working in Denmark

New to the Danish labour market

For foreign STEM professionals looking for future job opportunities, the Danish job market has a lot to offer. Salaries are high, the infrastructure is at a high level, and companies generally offer generous fringe benefits for employees.

How does the Danish labour market work?

The Danish labour market can be understood through the "Danish model". The labour market is largely regulated by collective agreements on pay and working conditions between the respective organisations of employers and employees, rather than the state. 

These agreements largely replace actual legislation and help ensure a peaceful and stable labour market. In addition, the trade unions also negotiate with the government – the so-called tripartite cooperation – about labour market policy on questions such as unemployment and insurance issues.

Learn more about the Danish model. 

Working environment in Denmark

Danish companies usually have a very flat organisational structure, handing out a lot of responsibility to the individual employee and their team. As a consequence, there is nothing wrong with taking issues and comments straight to the manager or CEO.

Read more about workplace environment.

Flexicurity

By European standards, the agreements on the Danish labour market are highly flexible, for instance with regard to working hours, overtime and hiring and firing of personnel. This also means that job mobility is high within the Danish labour market.

In return for their high level of flexibility, Danish employees are guaranteed a relatively comprehensive social security in times of unemployment, illness or occupational injury. Social security is guaranteed by law to all employees. The combination of high flexibility and comprehensive social security is why the Danish labour market is sometimes referred to as based on a “flexicurity model”.

For the individual employee, this means that your working life is more secure and flexible. It is generally easy to change jobs through the course of your career, and you are secure if you lose your job.

Read more about working hours.

International professionals and the Danish model

The flexibility and security of the Danish model also apply to foreign professionals who come to Denmark to find work. The Danish legislation ensures that foreign employees are given the same rights as Danes on the labour market when the relevant permits and contracts are in place.

Women on the labour market

Denmark holds the European record for most women on the labour market. Danish legislation ensures equal treatment regardless of gender. In terms of pay and working conditions, men and women are equal by law in Denmark. 

This means that the salary level is by law required to be the same for both men and woman performing the same job. In Denmark women work an average of 35 hours a week compared to 41 hours a week for men. These issues also make Denmark a very relevant choice for couples seeking jobs for both parties.