Forms of employment
There are different forms of employment at SLU. On this page, you will find more information about the different forms.
Employment for an indefinite period
One of the main ideas in the Employment Protection Act (LAS) is that as many employees as possible should have indefinite-term contracts. This is often referred to as fast anställning (permanent position) in Swedish.
There are various forms of fixed-term employment at SLU, from short hourly positions to doctoral positions of several years. The most common forms are fixed-term employment and hourly positions.
Fixed-term employment ends without prior notice when the term expires.
General fixed-term employment (LAS)
An employee may be taken on for general fixed-term employment (allmän visstidsanställning, ALVA) for a maximum of two years during a five-year period.
Note! 1 October 2022, the possibility of employing in the form of general fixed-term employment (ALVA) will cease. ALVA employments started before 1 October 2022 applies until the end date.
Special fixed-term employment (LAS)
From 1 October 2022 special fixed-term employment (SÄVA) replaces general fixed-term employment (ALVA). A person can be employed on a SÄVA contract for a total of 12 months during a five-year period.
In certain circumstances, staff with a fixed-term position may be able to waive their right to conversion an into indefinite-term position. They can do this once they have taken up their position. To be entitled to do this, their primary employment must be an indefinite-term position within the public sector and they must be in receipt of a portion of their occupational pension. Alternatively, their main occupation may be studying.
A written application must be submitted to the employer. It is valid for six months and a form is available from HR. The employer can then renew the registration for periods of six months at a time, but no longer than a consecutive period of 24 months from the first day of employment. A new waiver can only be submitted once six months have passed after the 24-month period.
Temporary substitute employment
An employee may be employed as a temporary substitute for a limited period of time. Temporary substitute employment means being employed to replace an employee who is on leave or has been assigned other tasks. A position as a temporary substitute must be connected to a specific person who is either on leave of absence or is performing duties other than their regular ones.
Seasonal employment (LAS)
Seasonal employment may be used when the need for labour varies from one period to another as a result of seasonal cycles. Within SLU’s fields of activity, this applies to e.g. agricultural, horticultural and forestry work.
When the season ends, the employment ends without prior notice. If you have been a seasonal employee for at least six months during the last two years, you have the right of priority to seasonal employment the following year.
Probationary employment (LAS)
Probationary employment is used for new employees with indefinite-term contracts. If the probationary employment is to be terminated without being converted into indefinite-term employment, the employee must be notified of this at least two weeks in advance.
Fixed-term employment in the public sector (central collective bargaining agreement)
Fixed-term employment is regulated in the Swedish Employment Protection Act (1982:80). The Act stipulates that fixed-term employment in the public sector – a form of temporary employment – will apply until further notice, however for a maximum period of two years.
Agreements on fixed-term employment in the public sector may be reached in the following instances:
- When an employer will be conducting a task for a fixed period following provisions in appropriation directions, a direct commission from a government office, or following agreement with an external party.
- If the need for employment and the task exceeds 12 months.
- If the duties are not part of the employer’s regular activities, and if the task is financed by a special additional budget or external funding.
- Co-determination negotiations must be held before a fixed-term employment decision can be taken.
External funding does not refer to direct government funding for research awarded after an application from an individual or research team. Research at a university is considered part of the employer’s regular activities. The same applies to courses and programmes, including contract education, at higher education institutions. Fixed-term employment in the public sector may not be used to employ a person as professor.
Adjunct teacher (central collective bargaining agreement)
An adjunct teacher is primarily employed outside the higher education sector. An adjunct teacher may be employed for a maximum of two years. Such employment may be extended for a maximum of two years at a time, as long as the university has a need. At SLU, there is a requirement that there must be extraordinary reasons if an adjunct post is for more than 20 per cent of a full-time post.
Doctoral employment (Higher Education Ordinance)
Doctoral employment is full-time. A doctoral post may be part-time if the doctoral student requests this. Someone who is employed as a doctoral student must primarily devote themselves to their studies. They may, however, work to a limited extent with teaching, research, artistic research and administration. Duties of this kind may not comprise more than 20 per cent of a full-time post.
Employment as a doctoral student applies until a specified date but never for more than one year after the award of a doctorate. A person may be employed as a doctoral student for a maximum of eight years. The total period of employment may not be longer than the equivalent of four years of full-time doctoral studies. For studies that conclude with the award of a licentiate degree, the total employment period may not exceed the time corresponding to two years of full-time doctoral studies. Any period of study other than the period when the student was employed as a doctoral student will be deducted from these periods. If there are special reasons (e.g. illness, union or student union assignments, parental leave, serving in the defence forces), the total period of employment may be longer.
Teaching assistant (Higher Education Ordinance)
Employment is for a maximum of one year and at no more than 50 per cent of a full-time post. Only someone admitted to undergraduate studies may be employed as a teaching assistant. The total period of employment may not exceed three years.
Fixed-term appointment under the so-called postdoctoral agreement (central collective agreement)
Postdoctoral appointment on or after 1 February 2022
This fixed-term postdoctoral appointment is for a minimum of two years and a maximum of three years. The appointment must be for a continuous period and on a full-time basis. The person appointed to the postdoc position will mainly conduct research, but teaching may be included in the duties for up to one-fifth of the working time.
For the postdoctoral agreement to be applicable, the position must have been advertised and the doctoral degree must have been obtained by the time of the appointment decision. It is an advantage if the doctoral degree is no more than three years old at the time of application.
A postdoctoral appointment of less than three years may be extended to a maximum of three years if this is necessary to achieve the purpose of the appointment, namely to develop independence as a researcher.
The appointment may also be extended beyond three years if special circumstances exist, such as illness, a position of trust in a trade union, or clinical service. An extension must be offered to anyone who has been on parental leave during the period of appointment.
Postdoctoral appointment before 1 February 2022
This fixed-term postdoctoral appointment is for a period of two years. The appointment must be for a continuous period.
For the postdoctoral agreement to be applicable, the position must have been advertised and the doctoral degree must have been obtained no more than three years before the end of the application period. Exceptions to this rule may be made if special circumstances exist. Extension beyond two years is possible if special circumstances exist, such as parental leave.
In addition, under the new postdoctoral agreement, appointments which extend beyond 1 October 2022 may be extended for up to a total of three years. A requirement is that the extension is done to achieve the purpose of the appointment, i.e. to develop independence as a researcher. Postdoctoral appointments expiring before 1 October 2022 cannot be extended under this rule.
Specialist training for veterinary surgeons (local collective bargaining agreement at SLU)
SLU veterinary surgeons who undertake specialist training (V-ST) can be employed on fixed-term contracts.
MSCA-funded positions (Marie Sklodowska Curie Actions), Horizon 2020
Employment as researcher, postdoc or doctoral student. Funds for these posts are granted from the EU framework programme Horizon 2020, either as grants to an individual and an organisation, or to several organisations at once.