The SER has set the guideline amount for OR training courses for 2023. The SER believes that €1160 per daily period is reasonable for OR training.
guideline amount higher than in 2022
Every year, the SER (Social and Economic Council) advises on reasonable rates for OR training. The guideline amount per daily period for 2023 has been established at €1160 (VAT not included), slightly higher than the guideline amount for 2022, which was €1100 per daily period (VAT not included).
guideline amount for customised OR training
The guideline amount of €1160 per daily period for customised training for the Works Council includes all costs: the preparation and implementation by the trainer, travel, materials, overhead, etc.
A quote from the SER website: “Each year, the SER determines the guideline amounts on the recommendation of the Commission for the Promotion of Employee Participation (CBM). These guideline amounts provide an indication of what, under normal circumstances, are reasonable costs per daily period for education and formation** of sufficient quality. It is therefore not a legal standard, but a guideline, intended to provide guidance to the entrepreneur and the Works Council in their deliberations about the training to be followed and the resulting costs.”
This brochure contains an extensive explanation from the SER. The most important points are explained below, with some calculation examples.
guideline amount for open enrolment OR training
For open enrolment training (OR training where individual members of different works councils follow an OR training with a fixed content), the guideline amount is again set at €190 per person per daily period (as in 2022).
sample calculations for a OR training course
Here are some sample calculations to make clear what the total costs per year will look like for a Works Council of 11 and 17 members, respectively. In these examples, the Works Council follows 15 daily period customised training sessions in one year. All Works Council members also follow open enrolment training. How do we arrive at 15 daily periods? The Works Councils Act (WOR) states that the Works Council is entitled to 5 days of ‘education and formation’; in its statements, the SER has indicated that one day consists of three daily periods.
*As indicated by the SER, we usually work with an average of one trainer per 13 persons in a training group. This ensures the effectiveness of the training.
what is ‘customised training’?
Customised training refers to all counselling of the Works Council that leads to an improvement of the working method, enabling the Works Council to better perform its (statutory) tasks as a control body. This includes not just training, but also Works Council coaching, for example.
Customised training focusses on topics such as how the Works Council makes decisions, how the Works Council organises its work, which methods the Works Council uses, how the Works Council wants to operate (e.g. a proactive Works Council) and the vision of the Works Council on its own work and on the organisation, etc.
the difference between OR training and hiring an expert
Different rules apply if the Works Council hires a so-called ‘external expert’ to assist the Works Council with a specific task, such as the writing of good advice in case of a request for advice. To protect the independence of the Works Council, no budget may be set for hiring an expert; this falls entirely outside the amounts and provisions as mentioned in this article. This article provides more information on how the Works Council can hire a consultant.
how are the guideline amounts for OR training courses determined?
The guideline amounts are calculated on the basis of the average rates of the recognised training institutes that provide employee participation training. These guideline amounts of the SER are not a legal standard but are intended to provide guidance to the Director and the Works Council on the courses to be followed and the costs involved. Of course, it is still important that you, as a Works Council, make a proper consideration based on content and cost.
the WOR entitles members to OR training
According to the WOR (Works Council Act), article 18, all Works Council members are entitled to ‘education and formation’**. Every Works Council is entitled to 5 education and formation days per year. This has been explained by the SER as ‘15 daily periods per year’.
These training days take place during working hours and with pay. In addition, the Director must give the Works Council members the opportunity to attend these training days.
the management is obliged to pay for the OR training
Also, according to the WOR, management is legally required to pay all costs that are reasonably necessary for OR training. And despite the fact that – looking at the reference amounts of the SER and the legal training days in the WOR – you have a total budget of more than €16,000 for a Works Council, management sometimes does not make it easy for the Works Councils to spend money on OR training.
The SER does not provide a guideline amount for the cost of accommodation for customised training courses for the entire Works Council, because these costs can vary greatly. This cost item must be taken into account when determining the amount required for the OR training. The guideline amount for open enrolment training courses does include the average cost of accommodation.
The quality of the location has a great influence on the OR training: the more the room (and everything around it) matches the content of the meeting, the more effective and productive the meeting will be.
Works Council training at CT²
Does your Works Council need training?
**The Works Council Act was drafted in 1950 and still mentions ‘education and formation’, which was later called ‘training’. However, the term OR training does not really cover the scope of this term; nowadays, these Works Council days are no longer about ‘learning’ but more about working together as a non-hierarchical team and arriving at an opinion/vision together. More often, we call these the Works Council off-site team days.
Note: Please note that we are a Dutch organisation and that all our information is originally composed in Dutch. For the benefit of our English-speaking customers we have translated some of our online information. We are still in the process of translating even more of our information. It could therefore be that you will come across Dutch pages on CT2.nl. Please contact us if you would like more information.