Site logo

Week 2 Work in Barcelona!
Spanish Work Culture

Week 2: Spanish Work Culture

Welcome to the second blog of our theme month. For the entire month of May in 2022, we organised the Work in Barcelona! month (sponsored by Telus International AI Data Solutions).


This month was all about providing you with the ultimate guide to working in Barcelona, where we dived into a different topic every week. On the right, you can see the different theme weeks.


We shared our best tips on how to improve your employability through CV writing and your social media presence. As well as, how the Spanish work culture works, what kind of paperwork and documents you’ll need and lastly living in Barcelona.


In this week’s blog, we dive into the Spanish work culture! Just to give you an example; Do you know what to do when you cannot come to work because of feeling ill? Do you just notify your boss? Do you hand in an online form? Or do you go to the doctor for an official note of absence? Something as simple as this can often cause confusion when you are new to Spanish work culture and experience some cultural differences. 


To help you navigate this environment, we have provided you with all the necessary information to integrate into the Spanish working lifestyle. Covering various aspects, ranging from how to call in sick to the Spanish business culture and how to read your payslip.


Do you want to find out what you can do to integrate and fully immerse yourself into the Spanish work culture? Then keep on reading!

This blog is sponsored by Telus International AI Data Solutions.


Monday, May 9th - A guide to Spanish business culture

Most likely, the Spanish business culture differs from what you are used to. We have created a short overview of some of the most important aspects to help you kick-start your international career in Barcelona. 

Social relationships

Connecting on a personal level is very important in Spanish work culture and it can be said that the way business is conducted in Spain is much more relaxed compared to other European countries. You can expect extra time to be put aside in meetings for general chit chat, as most meetings will normally begin with catching up with each other on a personal level to establish a solid working relationship.


Lunch is the most important meal of the day. Most people go out to a nearby restaurant or cafe for lunch. Lunches tend to start later (around 14:00) and last longer, so it’s the perfect time to socialise with colleagues!


Arranging the paperwork necessary to legally work in Barcelona can be a lengthy and challenging process. It’s best to start the procedures as soon as you can and try to not skip any steps, otherwise, you will not be able to start your new job.

Annual or holiday leave 

Employees are entitled to 22 business days per year for their annual/holiday leave. The leave can be divided up into more than one period, as long as one of the periods is at least two weeks long.

Tuesday, May 10th - Business landscape

Barcelona is a very international city, with companies ranging from all over the world and the industries ranging from tech to food! Read more about it in the blog below.

Wednesday, May 11th - How to read your payslip?

Reading your payslip in Barcelona can be very confusing if you don’t know where to look. Therefore, we are here to help!


The header contains information about the employer (empresa) and employee (trabajador).


In the middle you will find information about the period (periodo devengado), earnings (devengo) and deductions (deduccion).


The footer includes information about the rates which are used for calculation.

Thursday, May 12th - Call in sick

Calling in sick might be perceived as something small or unimportant, until you actually have to do it yourself!🤒 It’s good to be prepared for this and know how it works here in Barcelona (of course, this depends on your company, but this is the general overview for BCN).


In some countries you can just call your boss and tell him the bad news, but here it requires a few more steps.

Friday, May 13th - Relocating

Relocating to a new country is an exciting prospect for those who want to experience new adventures, but what most expats don’t realise is that building your new life abroad and fitting in isn’t always as easy as it seems. However, we have some tips to help you! 

First of all, we recommend you to be open minded! Catalans have a lot of cool traditions you have to see! Such as the castellers, you can read more about it in the blog below.

Second of all, live like a local! Avoid sticking to your expat bubble but get out of your comfort zone and ask your colleagues to drink a ‘copa’ with you.

Lastly, learning the language will make your life a lot easier! Just knowing some words will be very much appreciated by the locals, but will also help you out in your day to day life.


The 24th of May we organised the Work in Barcelona! Job Fair. This time we tried taking a different approach. We talked business but in a casual setting, at the beach bar: Club Soda!


The fair was the perfect opportunity for everyone looking for or interested in working in Barcelona to explore the job opportunities in Barcelona! At the fair several recruitment agencies attended, but also companies focused on helping expats with anything related to starting work life in Barcelona!

spanish work culture
spanish work culture
spanish work culture

About Telus International

Creating and enhancing the world’s data to enable better AI via human intelligence.

We help companies test and improve machine learning models via our global AI Community of 1 million+ annotators and linguists. Our AI Data Solutions vastly enhance AI systems across a range of applications from advanced smart products, to better search results, to expanded speech recognition, to more human-like bot interactions and so much more.


  • No comments yet.
  • Add a comment