Looking to hire foreign workers in France?

While this can be a great way to solve your labor shortage, there are many things to consider.

Hiring a foreign employee in France involves lots of administrative procedures that must be followed diligently.

Failing to comply with the country’s labor laws and regulations may lead to penalties.

This guide will equip you with the right insights and tools to successfully hire non-EU workers in France and ensure a smooth integration of international talent into your workforce.


Steps for Hiring Foreign Workers in France


When hiring foreign workers, companies can get in touch with OFII (Office for Immigration and Integration).

OFII serves as the main contact point for companies hiring foreigners. It helps employers with the process of bringing foreign workers into France.

Put simply, OFII plays a pivotal role in the entire process, from an employer’s work permit application to assisting with the recruitment of foreign candidates.

Read on to learn the exact steps you must take when hiring foreign workers in France.


Step 1: Conduct a Labor Market Test


Before hiring foreign workers in France, you must show evidence of the unavailability of EU employees to fill the position.

To do so, you must post the job offer in a public employment agency.

The main public employment agencies in France are Pôle Emploi and APEC.

Pôle Emploi is an employment agency catering to job seekers from different professional backgrounds and skill levels.

It offers a wide range of services, including job search assistance and unemployment benefits.

Likewise, APEC (Association Pour l’Emploi des Cadres) is supporting executives and professionals in their career development.

It specializes in providing them with expert guidance and opportunities that fit their skills.

However, in the case of most non-EU workers, you will have to post a job offer on Pôle Emploi.

You must publish the job offer for three weeks. This allows enough time to identify potentially suitable candidates already located in the French labor market.

If the job post remains unanswered during this period, you can explore international talent pools.

Next, you can initiate the application process for a work permit.


Step 2: Apply for a Work Permit


The application for a work permit is  known as an “introduction procedure”. When hiring foreign workers in France, you can apply for a work permit online via the dedicated online portal.

The application for a work permit must include the following documents:


  • Employment contract


  • Information about the company, such as statutes, Kbis extract, etc.


  • Evidence of payment of the social security contributions


  • Copy of the worker’s passport


  • Results of the labor market test


  • Education diplomas and professional certificates for the future worker


  • Commitment to pay the fee to the OFII

The fee you must pay to the OFII varies according to the salary and type of employment contract.

For instance, for a work contract with a duration between 3 and 12 months, you must pay according to the following categories of gross monthly salaries:

  • Lower or equal to 1554,58 € – 74 €


  • Between 1554,58 € and 2331,88 € – 210 €


  • Higher than 2331,88 € – 300 €


On the other hand, for a work contract with a duration higher than 12 months, you must pay according to the following categories of gross monthly salaries:

  • Lower than 3886,46 € – 55% of the gross salary


  • Higher or equal to 3886,46 € – 2137,55 €


Upon approval of the work permit, your future employee will receive it electronically via OFII.

The France visa application process can be started six months subsequent to the issuance of the work permit.


France Work Permit Application Review: Key Factors Considered


When reviewing the work permit application, the competent authorities will take into consideration factors such as:

  • The employee demand in the specific profession


  • Your ability to provide the employee with suitable accommodation


  • The skills and qualifications of the foreign employee and how they match the job requirements


  • Whether you are able to comply with French labor law and regulatory conditions associated with the position


  • Employment conditions and compensation for foreign workers in France. The compensation must be at least equal to the national minimum wage. The minimum wage in France is called SMIC. In 2023, it was set at 1,709.28 EUR per month on a weekly basis of 35 hours.


Step 3: Your Future Employee Applies for a France Work Visa


Upon approval of the work permit, your future employee can proceed to apply for a France work visa.

This can be done at the appropriate Embassy, Consulate, or Visa Application Center.

The responsibility for collecting the necessary supporting documents lies with the worker.

To assist workers in this process, we have created a comprehensive guide for applying for a work visa for France.

This guide includes a checklist of the required documents. It also provides  information about the application procedures and legal requirements.

Access the complete guide by clicking here.


Hiring Foreign Workers in France: Further Considerations


Upon approval of the work visa, your employee can enter France.

Make sure you inform your employee that:

  • They must validate the work visa online within two months from the date of their arrival in the country. This way, the France work visa attains the status equivalent to a residence permit. This enables your employee to legally reside in France for the entire validity period of the visa.


  • After validating the work visa, they will receive an invitation to complete a medical exam at the OFII. They will also need to sign the Republican Integration Contract (CIR). The CIR is an agreement between a foreign national and the French state. By signing the CIR, a foreign national commits to upholding the values of the French Republic. They also commit to participating in any required training programs.


  • A work visa for France can be renewed two months prior to its expiration. Foreign workers can do this online via the official website of the Ministry of the Interior.


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