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Spain PEO: Benefits & Best Services in 2024

Key Takeaways

  • A Spain Professional Employer Organizaion (PEO) supports global companies to hire employees in Spain where the company does not have an existing presence there. 
  • The Spain PEO company hires and onboards employees, taking care of payroll, compliance and employment taxes.  
  • By using a Spain PEO solution, your company guarantees full compliance with local laws and regulations. 

Professional Employer Organizations (PEOs) within Spain are transforming how companies manage their international human resources operations. These organizations offer streamlined international hiring and payroll management solutions, simplifying cross-border expansion. In a business landscape where opportunities transcend borders, Spanish PEOs prioritize efficiency and adherence to complex regulations.

The challenges of international expansion can lead businesses to question the potential impact of a Spanish PEO partnership. However, consider this compelling statistic: a recent report by a leading HR consultancy revealed a 66% reduction in administrative HR issues for companies utilizing PEOs during global growth. This demonstrates the transformative role PEOs play in the international business arena.

Spain’s dynamic economy and openness to international investment create a particularly fertile environment for PEO success.

What is a Spain PEO?

Spain PEO is an organization that businesses partner with to manage their HR tasks and employer responsibilities in Spain. It is outsourcing your HR department to local experts. This includes handling tax filing and ensuring compliance with Spanish employment laws. A Spain PEO shares the responsibility and liability for your employees.

Traditional HR models often struggle with international labor laws, especially when hiring and managing employees in a country with distinct legal frameworks like Spain. However, Spain PEOs are collaborators who ensure your business adheres to Spanish employment standards without stress. This model has gained traction, especially for companies looking to tap into the Spanish market without establishing a full-fledged legal entity.


Both offer unique services, but they’re not quite the same, and knowing the difference can significantly impact your HR strategy.

When you partner with a PEO, you share the employer’s responsibilities. The PEO becomes a co-employer of your employees in Spain. They handle complex HR tasks like payroll and employee benefits. But you still call the shots regarding your employees’ day-to-day activities and overall management. You have an HR department for all the technical details while you focus on running your business.

An EOR, in contrast to a PEO, becomes the legal employer of your workforce in Spain. They handle all employment responsibilities and comply with local labor laws. This is especially helpful if you don’t have a legal entity in Spain. With an EOR, you can hire employees in Spain without the stress of establishing a local presence.

Choosing between a PEO and an EOR in Spain depends on your business needs. If you want to maintain control over your workforce while offloading HR responsibilities, hire a PEO. But if you’re looking to hire in Spain without establishing a legal entity there, an EOR is better.

what is a spain peo
How a Spain PEO Works


A PEO in Spain forms a co-employment relationship with your company. This means they become the official employer of record for your employees in Spain on paper. Still, you retain complete control over your employees’ work assignments, management, and day-to-day activities.

A PEO is your HR department’s supportive partner. They step in to manage critical yet time-consuming tasks like payroll processing and employee benefits management. For example, a Spanish PEO calculates and distributes paychecks when it comes to payroll. They also ensure every aspect of your payroll complies with local laws and tax withholdings.

Integrating a PEO into your existing business structure is designed to be smooth and non-disruptive. Initially, they thoroughly assess your business needs, mainly focusing on your HR and payroll requirements in Spain. Based on this analysis, they tailor their services to your situation.

Once onboard, the PEO works with your HR team. They typically set up a shared technology platform where both parties can easily access and manage employee information and keep track of payroll and compliance updates. This level of integration means you get real-time information about your HR operations in Spain.

Is PEO Legal in Spain?

Professional Employment Organizations (PEOs) in Spain operate within the legal framework of the country’s employment laws and regulations. Spanish authorities recognize and authorize these organizations to act as the employer of record on behalf of client companies.

This arrangement is a compliant and legitimate way for domestic and international businesses to engage a workforce in Spain without needing to establish their own company in the country. It provides a flexible and efficient solution for companies looking to navigate the complexities of Spanish employment regulations while focusing on their core operations and expansion efforts in one of Europe’s prominent business destinations.

Why Spain, and Why Now?

One of the most attractive aspects of Spain’s payroll system is its tax rate structure. For businesses, the Spanish tax system offers several benefits that are hard to ignore. 

There are flexibility and incentives available for businesses, especially those bringing in new investment or technology into the country. These incentives can significantly lower the effective tax rate, and this makes Spain an appealing destination for business expansion.

Here are some resources to consider:

Resource NameDescriptionWebsite
Banco Santander: Direct Grants to Companies and the Self-EmployedInformation on grants specifically focused on COVID-19 recovery for SMEs and self-employed. Provides eligibility details and application process.Link
Invest in Spain: Aids and IncentivesOverview of various financial incentives offered by the Spanish government, including grants, loans, and tax advantages.Link
ICEX Spain Trade and InvestmentGuide to Spanish incentives, grants, and state aid. Includes eligibility, types of support, and the application process.Link
Spanish Ministry of Industry, Trade, and TourismThe main government body responsible for business development. Their website will host information about current grant programs.Link

Beyond tax benefits, Spain is also at the forefront of integrating technology into payroll systems. The country has embraced digital solutions to streamline payroll processes. This makes them more efficient and less prone to errors. This means you’re saving money on taxes as well as saving time and resources in managing payroll.

Also, Spain’s emphasis on payroll digitization has another significant advantage—transparency. With advanced reporting capabilities and real-time data access, businesses can get a clearer picture of their payroll operations, which facilitates better decision-making and strategy planning.

However, while the advantages are clear, Spanish payroll systems can still be tricky, especially for businesses new to the Spanish market. 

Spain’s Labor Laws

Spain’s labor laws are designed to protect both employers and employees, but they come with strict requirements. For instance, Spain has strict regulations on employment contracts. There are different types of contracts (permanent, temporary, training, etc.), each with its legal stipulations.

Then, there’s the working hours. The legal limit is 40 hours per week, but Spain’s laws allow for significant flexibility in arranging those hours. However, getting this wrong could lead to compliance issues or penalties.

Another crucial aspect is payroll taxes in Spain. These taxes fund social security and other state-run employee benefits. The calculation of these taxes varies depending on the type of contract, salary level, and more.

Non-compliance can lead to substantial fines and legal complications. For example, failure to adhere to contract laws can result in penalties of up to several thousand euros per employee.

Benefits of a PEO in Spain

Here’s how PEOs simplify the global expansion process and manage payroll and legal complexities:

1. Simplifying Market Entry

Each region in the Spanish market has unique regulations, not to mention the national labor laws you must comply with. A Spain PEO helps to streamline the process of setting up your operations, removing the barriers typically associated with international expansions. 

For instance, without a PEO, you would need to establish a legal entity in Spain, which can be time-consuming and costly. A PEO, however, allows you to bypass this requirement, providing a quicker and more efficient entry into the market.

2. Handling Regulations with Ease

Spain’s legislation, particularly in employment and tax laws, is confusing. A PEO’s expertise in these areas ensures that your business practices align with local laws, drafting compliant employment contracts and adhering to labor standards. This compliance is crucial for safeguarding your business from legal issues and maintaining your reputation as a responsible employer.

For instance, Spain has specific laws regarding employee terminations and severance pay, which can be tricky for foreign businesses. A mistake here can lead to legal disputes and financial losses. A PEO, well-versed in these regulations, can guide you through these processes and ensure that your business decisions are strategic and compliant.

2. Payroll Management

Managing payroll taxes and ensuring timely payments under Spanish law are tasks that PEOs handle efficiently. This includes staying updated on changes in tax rates or social security contributions, which can be pretty dynamic. By managing these aspects, PEOs free you to focus on your business’s growth and expansion.

The Downsides of a Spain PEO

1. Cost Implications

PEOs, while efficient, come with a price tag. For small businesses or startups, the costs of these services may be a significant factor to consider. It’s essential to weigh the financial implications against the benefits of outsourcing HR functions.

2. Control and Communication Issues

Relying on a PEO can sometimes lead to feelings of lost control over specific HR processes. Also, communication lapses can occur, especially when the PEO manages a significant part of employee interactions.

3. Generic Approach

Some PEOs might offer standardized solutions that may not perfectly match the specific needs of your business. This can be challenging for companies with unique HR dem

Choosing a Spain PEO to Overcome These Challenges

1. Cost-benefit Analysis

Before partnering with a PEO, conduct a thorough cost-benefit analysis. Assess how the PEO’s services align with your finance and business needs. Remember, the goal is to cut costs and optimize value.

2. Clear Communication Channels

Establish robust communication channels with your PEO. Detailed reporting and transparent processes can prevent control and communication issues. It’s crucial to maintain an open line of dialogue to ensure your business’s needs are met effectively.

3. Customization

Hire PEOs that offer customizable solutions. A PEO willing to tailor their services to your unique requirements can be a more effective partner. Don’t hesitate to discuss customization options and ensure the PEO understands your business culture and objectives.

5 Best Spain PEOs

  1. Horizons is an international EOR provider headquartered in Europe with a long history and reputation as a hiring partner in Spain. With its user-friendly platform and additional hiring support through visa services, recruitment, and contractor support, Horizons is our choice for the top Spain PEO. Read more in our detailed analysis of the Horizons PEO service. 
  2. Deel provides a user-friendly platform that streamlines HR processes and compliance management. They offer localized payroll, contractor management, and HR support to simplify international expansion for businesses in Spain. Read more in our breakdown of Deel’s services and products.

  3. Omnipresent focuses on providing global employment solutions, including PEO services in Spain. Their platform offers a single interface for managing HR, payroll, and compliance, helping businesses scale internationally. For more information on what makes Omnipresent different, look at our Omnipresent review. 

  4. People2.0 specializes in providing flexible employment solutions for international businesses. With their PEO services in Spain, they offer tailored solutions, compliance support, and a robust technology platform. For more information, see our People2.0 Review. 

  5. Remote: Remote is a PEO platform that offers comprehensive HR, payroll, and compliance services for businesses expanding to Spain. They combine technology-driven solutions with localized expertise, ensuring smooth operations in the Spanish market. Read our Remote Review.


They differ primarily in their level of responsibility and how they relate with your business and employees.

In Spain, an EOR takes on full legal responsibility for employment, compliance with labor laws, payroll, taxes, and benefits administration. It is ideal for businesses that don't have a legal entity in Spain but want to hire local employees. Essentially, the EOR handles all the formal employment responsibilities.

On the other hand, a Spain PEO enters into a co-employment arrangement with your business. While they manage HR tasks like tax filings and employee benefits, your company maintains control over the employees' day-to-day activities and overall management. This setup is for businesses that already have a legal presence in Spain and need support with HR administration, but want to retain direct control over their workforce.

The cost of partnering with a Professional Employer Organization (PEO) depends on the size of your business and the specific services required. Generally, PEOs charge either a percentage of the overall payroll or a per-employee fee. While it looks like an added expense, it's important to consider the value a PEO brings. For many businesses, especially those expanding internationally, the benefits and convenience offered by a PEO often outweigh the costs.