Definition: Total labour cost
This heading is defined as the total expenditure borne by employers in order to employ workers, a concept which has been adopted in the Community framework and complies broadly with the international definition of the International Conference of Labour Statisticians (Geneva, 1966). Labour costs include the direct costs linked to remuneration for work carried out such as direct remuneration, bonuses and ex gratia payments not paid at each pay period, payments for days not worked, severance pay, benefits in kind. They also include indirect costs linked to employees, independently of the remuneration paid by the employer, such as collectively agreed, contractual and voluntary social security contributions, direct social benefits, vocational training costs, other social expenditure (cultural and medical services, transport costs, etc.), and taxes relating to employment regarded as labour costs, less any subsidies received.
Community Survey of Labour Costs, Methods and Definitions, Eurostat 1992, P. 8-9