Russia | Amendments to the Labour Code regulating electronic HR documents management will be adopted shortly


On November 22, the State Duma adopted Federal Law № 377-FZ “On Amendments to the Labour Code of the Russian Federation” with regard to the regulation of electronic HR documents management.

Since the middle of 2020, almost 400 companies took part in an experiment on electronic HR documents management which allowed developing practice and making changes to the Labour Code based on real business practice.

Electronic HR documents management means creation, signing, use and storage of documents that are executed electronically and have no duplicate in paper form by an employer, employee (incoming employee).

The electronic document flow will be carried out through «Work in Russia», which is a unified digital platform, or the employer’s own information system that complies with the requirements of the Russian Labour Code.

What shall companies do?

Since the adoption of the law, companies can develop local normative acts and use the digital platform provided by the state to exchange documents, or develop their own system, or contract with a provider to use a third-party’s electronic HR documents management systems.

Electronic HR documents management system is introduced on the basis of a local normative act, taking into account an opinion of a trade union organization (if any). This act shall contain:

  • Data about the information system;
  • The procedure for access to the employer’s information system (if any);
  • A list of electronic documents and a list of categories of employees to which the electronic HR documents management system applies;
  • A deadline for notifying the employees of the transition to electronic HR documents management system and the date of its implementation.

This act can also include :

  • Deadlines for the employee’s signature and familiarization with electronic documents (taking into account the work schedule);
  • Briefing for employees on the issues of interaction with the employer through the electronic HR documents management system;
  • Exceptional cases in which paper documents are allowed.

The employee shall also be notified of the transition to electronic HR documents management system interaction and his/her written consent to begin work must also be obtained.

Subject to consent and depending on the provisions of the local normative act, it will be possible to familiarize the employee with it electronically and begin an active exchange of documents.

What shall an employee do?

After receiving notification of the transition to the electronic HR documents management system, the employee can either accept or refuse to use it. If the employee changes his/her mind, he/she can join the electronic document exchange at any time.

The employee can apply for the documents in both available forms, and the employer must provide the mentioned documents or copies thereof in hard copy within 3 working days from the date of this application in the form specified in the employee’s application (paper copy of the electronic document or the electronic document itself).

If the employer has implemented the electronic HR documents management system and the employee was hired after 31 December 2021, and had no employment history prior to that time, the employee’s consent to the introduction of the electronic HR documents management system is not required. In other cases, it is mandatory, and failure to agree to interact with the employer via EDI cannot be grounds for refusing to hire or for dismissing the employee.

We would like to remind that previously the document flow could not be carried out only in electronic form (except for companies from the list of participants in the experiment).

Which documents can be signed electronically?

The employer itself determines the list of documents to be exchanged electronically. However, such list shall not include:

  • Labour books and information on employment activity;
  • Acts of industrial accidents;
  • Orders (decrees) on dismissal;
  • documents confirming the completion of occupational safety briefings.

What types of signatures can be used?

The law proposes to use a very wide range of signature types, making distinctions about signing different types of documents, as well as restrictions for employers.

Thus, the employer can only use a qualified signature to sign:

  1. Labour agreements and notices of changes in their terms and conditions;
  2. Agreements on material responsibility;
  3. Apprenticeship agreements;
  4. Agreements for on-the-job or off-the-job education;
  5. An order (instruction) to impose a disciplinary punishment.

In the table below there are the variants for using the signature:

Type of electronic signature  Platform Work in Russia Electronic HR documents management system of the Employer/Provider
Employer Employee Employer Employee
Qualified + + + +
Non-qualified, its verification procedure is determined by agreement of the parties to the labour agreement +* +
Non-qualified, issued using the infrastructure of e-government +* + +* +
Simple, received in person when applying for state and municipal services in electronic form + +*
* excluding the documents mentioned at the beginning of the section

Please note, issuance of the signature to the Employee is at the Employer’s expense. If the Employee already has a qualified signature, he/she can use it in Electronic HR documents management system.


Our specialists of the Labour Law Practice will provide consulting services on interpreting legislative changes and developing necessary local normative acts.

We can also offer to organize electronic HR documents management system using our platform Client Login.

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