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The Need for Swedes: How to Hire the Best Talent from Sweden

Ah, Sweden. More than just a scenic beauty, it’s a nation that prides itself on innovation, equality, education, and a high standard of living, making it an appealing destination not only for tourists but also for businesses looking to source outstanding workers.

With a population exceeding 10 million people, Sweden, along with fellow Scandinavian nations, has pioneered the “nordic model” of social, economic, and cultural activity. That in turn has fostered a particular kind of open-mindedness and creativity among the Swedish population, traits that are invaluable in the global workforce.

Sweden’s talent specialty lies in its highly educated workforce, renowned particularly for its proficiency in technology, innovation, and sustainability. Swedish universities are among the top in the world, producing graduates with strong skills in engineering, information technology, and environmental sciences. This focus on education and skill development has positioned Sweden as a leader in research and development, making it home to some of the world’s most innovative companies and startups (anyone heard of Spotify?).

Swedish work culture is characterized by a strong emphasis on work-life balance, inclusivity, and employee well-being. Typically, the working week runs from Monday to Friday, with flexible working hours being a common practice to accommodate employees’ personal lives. Sweden is also known for its generous parental leave policies, promoting a culture where both work and family life are valued equally.

The benefits of doing business in Sweden

Still not sold on Sweden? What if we were to tell you that Sweden is a compelling hub for businesses looking to tap into workers with skills across a wide range of sectors? For instance, the country is revered for its advancements in manufacturing and engineering industries such as steel, automotive, chemical, and forestry, which account for around 20% of its GDP. It doesn’t stop there, however; Sweden is also at the forefront of cutting-edge sectors including life sciences, fintech, mobile technology, and cleantech. This diverse industrial base is supported by a culture that values diversity and innovation, with global brands like Ikea, Volvo, Ericsson, H&M, and Spotify illustrating the country’s ability to compete on the world stage. 

When it comes to the Swedish workforce, the picture is equally impressive. Despite the significant contribution of manufacturing to Sweden’s export income, the workforce in private industry remains relatively lean, signaling high levels of efficiency and productivity. Indeed, Swedish worker productivity has in recent decades been among the highest in the world. Swedish worker specialties also include polymer ion-exchangers, iron powder, nuclear reactors, non-fillet fresh fish, and kraft paper–this high level of specialization underlining the advanced skill set and innovative capabilities of the Swedish workforce, making the country an attractive proposition for businesses seeking highly skilled and specialized talent.

If you’d like to get your hands on that talent, look no further than our competitive global employment platform, which features country-specific pricing so you can be sure to get the best deal whether you’re hiring in Sweden or beyond. The Multiplier platform makes the process effortless, with contract generation possible in under five minutes (seriously, we’ve timed it).

Other nuances for businesses to note when hiring in Sweden include the construction of attractive compensation packages. It’s crucial to get this right as offering the right employee benefits enhances retention, job satisfaction, and facilitates the attraction of top-notch Swedish talent. 

Read more about benefits and compensation in Sweden here!


We’ve still only scratched the surface of reasons to hire in Sweden. Here are three takeaways you need to understand about the Swedish workforce.

  • Dynamic Workforce Growth: Sweden is experiencing notable growth in its labor force, particularly among the younger population aged between 15 and 24 years, projecting a 2% increase by 2030. This indicates a rejuvenating workforce that could bring fresh perspectives and innovative ideas to businesses. 
  • Diverse Employment Sectors: The Swedish labor market is distinguished by its diversity, with the “strongest employment trend” since 2009 observed in agriculture, forestry, business services, and construction. This variety in thriving industries highlights the adaptability and broad skill set of the Swedish workforce. 
  • Engaged Yet Balanced: Sweden boasts a labor force participation rate of 74.5% as of February 2024, reflecting a highly engaged workforce. Alongside this high engagement, Sweden is renowned for its commitment to maintaining a healthy work-life balance, including flexible working hours and generous parental leave policies. Businesses investing in the Swedish market can benefit from a motivated and productive workforce that values balance and well-being.

How does that sound? We know this is a lot of information to take into consideration. That’s why at Multiplier we pride ourselves on offering dedicated, 24/5 support tailored to specific countries–so you can sit back and relax in the knowledge that the professionals have things under control. 

Now you’re speaking their language

Picture this scenario: you’ve hired and onboarded talent from Sweden, and now you’re wondering what makes them tick. Consider these tips for effective communication with your Swedish colleagues, starting with the stuff that helps no matter where they’re based:

  1. Clear Communication: Clearly communicate job expectations, company culture, and goals to ensure alignment. Regular check-ins and feedback sessions can help keep everyone on the same page.
  2. Leverage Technology: Use technology to facilitate collaboration and communication. Tools like Slack, Microsoft Teams, or Trello can help manage projects effectively.
  3. Integration: Make efforts to integrate remote workers into the company culture. Virtual team-building activities or occasional in-person meetings (if possible) can foster a sense of belonging.
  4. Legal Compliance: Ensure all employment contracts and practices comply with Swedish labor laws, even when hiring remotely. Luckily, with Multiplier, our easy-to-use platform ensures compliance is guaranteed, with automatic contract generation that dots the Is and crosses the Ts.

That’s the easy stuff out of the way, but connecting with your new Swedish hire requires a little more nuance. In Sweden, the love for sports runs deep thanks to a cultural emphasis on health, fitness, and communal participation. That being the case, why not start with some sports chat? Football (or soccer, if you prefer) is the most watched sport, a passion that unites Swedes across the country, closely followed by ice hockey, a sport in which Sweden has achieved considerable international success. Outside the top two, floorball, handball, skiing, athletics, and tennis also enjoy widespread popularity.

That’s not to say every Swede is sports-mad. Swedish culture, much like its sporting scene, is rich and varied. The country is renowned for its contributions to art, music, literature, and design, boasting global icons such as ABBA and IKEA (capital letters seem to be a national obsession for Swedes). More locally, the Swedish tradition of ‘fika’ — taking a break to enjoy coffee and pastries with friends or colleagues — epitomizes the Swedish approach to life: a balance between work and relaxation. So why not set up a digital fika of your own and get to know what makes your Swedish colleagues tick?

Speaking the truth

Of course, if you really want to impress your new hire, you could try picking up some Swedish terminology.  For greetings, “Hej” (pronounced like ‘hey’) is the informal go-to for saying hello, while “God dag” offers a more formal touch, translating directly to “Good day”. “Hej då” (pronounced ‘hey doh’) serves as a common and versatile way to say goodbye, fitting for both formal and informal settings.

While Swedes tend to have excellent English skills (with around 9 in 10 speaking the language), knowing a few Swedish phrases might be invaluable in a professional setting. For instance, when discussing deadlines, knowing how to say “Can we extend the deadline?” which translates to “Kan vi förlänga deadline?” could prove useful. If you’re caught in a situation where a project plan isn’t working out, a Swede might say “Det här går inte ihop”, meaning “This doesn’t add up”. And for those instances where collaboration is key, “Låt oss samarbeta” translates to “Let’s collaborate”. Sorted!

Given Sweden’s status as a tech hub boasting global giants like Spotify, grasping some basic Swedish tech terminology might be polite (though, again, English is probably going to work too). For example, when referring to software development, one might discuss “programvaruutveckling”. If the conversation turns towards startup culture, “start-up kultur” is the phrase you’re looking for. And in discussions about digital transformation or “digital omvandling”, you might encounter terms like “molntjänster” (cloud services) or “kryptering” (encryption).

Did you know?

Now that we’ve got the serious business out of the way, let’s have a quick look at some Swedish fun facts.

Sweden’s history extends far beyond the Viking Age that many people first associate with the country. Notably, Sweden was a major empire during the 17th century, when it was one of the great powers of Europe. Sweden has since transformed from a warlike state to one of the world’s most peaceful nations, with a long-standing policy of neutrality in conflicts.

When it comes to famous Swedes, the list is long and distinguished across various fields. We’re tempted to mention ABBA again, but in the realm of science, Alfred Nobel stands out not only for inventing dynamite (OK, maybe not such a great idea), but also for establishing the Nobel Prizes, awarded annually in Stockholm. 

Finally, the food. There’s no discussing Swedish cuisine without mentioning the iconic smörgåsbord, a buffet-style meal with a variety of hot and cold dishes. If you’ve ever been to an IKEA, you’re no doubt also familiar with meatballs, served with gravy, boiled potatoes, and lingonberry jam. Then, on the less appetizing side of the equation there’s surströmming, fermented Baltic Sea herring known for its strong smell and, ahem, acquired taste. Skål! 

Hungry for more Sweden info?

We’ve got you covered! So far we’ve talked about the big picture, but our talent wiki page contains all the nitty gritty information you need to make your Sweden hiring plans an astronomical success. Click the link for details on statutory leave, public holidays, talent sourcing locations, and much, much more!


Employers must contribute 31.42% social security tax

Employee benefits

  • Private medical insurance
  • Sickness & Disability
  • Life insurance
  • Work injury insurance

Visa requirements

  • There are various types of Swedish work visas that foreign employees may apply for based on the purpose and duration of their employment, including:
    1. Sweden Work Permit
    2. Intra-company Transfer
    3. Business Visa
    4. Self-employment visa
    5. Working Holiday visa
    6. EU Blue Card
Highly educated

Make international employment possible with Multiplier

And that’s the lowdown on hiring in Sweden. Now you’ve heard the benefits, make your dreams a reality with Multiplier. We’re here to help businesses boost their productivity with exceptional global talent, whether from Sweden or anywhere else!

Our presence in over 100 countries worldwide showcases the breadth of expertise we possess. Multiplier is a one-stop solution for all your global hiring needs, so why not talk to our experts and book a demo today?

Will Smith
Will Smith

Content Writer

Will is a Content Writer at Multiplier. With a background in technology journalism, he is passionate about busting jargon, getting to the heart of complex topics, and writing pieces you'll enjoy reading.

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