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Switch to electronic employment record books in 2020

Electronic employment record books will start being used in 2020, so we have addressed the following questions related to their introduction:

How will the switch to electronic employment record books take place?

Anyone hired after January 01, 2021 will have no choice of format for their employment record book as they will then no longer be issued in paper form, and only electronic employment record books will be available from this date onwards.

All employees will be able to decide in 2020 whether they want to use electronic employment record books: 

  • Until December 31, 2019 employees may submit an application to their employers in any format specifying whether they would like to keep their paper employment record book or switch to an electronic one; 
  • For employees who have chosen to keep their paper book, employers will need to record this choice both in the employees’ electronic and paper employment record book; 
  • If no application is submitted by employees by the end of 2020, their employer will have to keep these employees’ employment record book in paper while also filling out their electronic version;
  • Information about employees’ application is included in their work record for storage in the Pension Fund of the Russian Federation; 
  • Employees who choose to keep their paper employment record book will be able to keep it when they change job in the future.

When someone was unable to apply but wants to keep a paper employment record book

If someone is unable to submit an application for paper employment record book before December 31, 2019, and if this person did not work on December 31, 2019 for the reasons listed below, it will be possible to submit the application to the employer at any time:  

  1. This employee was employed on December 31, 2020 but did not work because he/she was on:
    • Vacation;
    • Sick leave;
    • Was suspended from work in cases provided by the Russian Labor Code or other regulations.
  2. The employee had worked under an employment contract but was not employed on December 31, 2020.

What should employers know about electronic employment record books?

Employers will have to follow new rules and fulfill certain obligations due the introduction of this new electronic format for employment record books:

  • Employers will have to perform necessary actions only once in 2020 as prescribed by law; 
  • Employers will also have to fulfill new permanent obligations. 

One-off actions in 2020

To introduce electronic employment record books in their company, employers must:

  1. Adopt or amend their internal regulations if necessary (considering the opinion of the company’s trade union if any);
  2. Amend agreements and collective agreements if necessary (considering the opinion of the employees’ authorized representatives);
  3. Ensure that everything is ready to submit information about employees’ work activity to the Pension Fund;
  4. Send a written notice to each employee before June 30, 2020 to notify of the changes to the law on electronic employment record books and of the choice of information storage form whether paper or electronic.

New permanent obligations from 2020

Monthly report to the Pension Fund on SZV-TD form

From January 01, 2020 employers will be required to inform the Pension Fund of HR events (employment, transfer, dismissal) every month no later than the 15th following the reporting month. For this, it will be necessary to submit reports on work life of employees (“SZV-TD report”).

When providing such information about an employee for the first time, it will be necessary to also provide information about his/her work activity as of January 01, 2020.

Reporting since 2021

From January 01, 2021 employers will be required to inform the Pension Fund of employment or dismissal no later than the working day following the date of issuance of employment or dismissal order.

It will still be necessary to submit information also in electronic form even when employees choose to use a paper employment record book, so in this case, the paper employment record book will need to be filled out in addition to the electronic version.