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Corporate social responsibility
24 June 2021
LVMH launches a global emergency and support fund for employees affected by life accidents
In June, LVMH launched its Heart Fund for its 150,000 employees worldwide. The luxury giant has announced that it will endow the fund with €30 million to provide a telephone based psychological support service, available wherever the company is located, and to provide financial support for employees facing serious difficulties. Françoise Schoenberger, LVMH Global Director Social Development, answered Planet Labor’s questions about the fund’s contours and the motivation for this initiative, which is...
23 June 2021
Germany: HR professionals supporting refugee entrance to the job market
Since 2016, volunteer HR managers registered on the HR-integrate platform have been mentoring refugees in their search for a job, vocational training ,or a place at university in Germany. Thomas Batsching, one of the HR professionals behind the project and CEO of the Karlsruhe-based consultancy HR Works Personalwerk, has spoken with Planet Labor about the main successes and problems in implementing the project, as well as about the new challenges ahead.
14 June 2021
United Kingdom: Sodexo publishes its ethnicity pay gap for the first time
On 1 June, the UK business of French food services group Sodexo published – for the very first time and despite the pandemic – its ethnicity pay gap for the year 2020. According to the firm’s pay report, the hourly earnings of its employees in the UK and Ireland of BAME (Black, Asian and Mixed Ethnic) backgrounds are 5% lower on average than those of its white employees. This is a gap that Sodexo is hopeful of reducing through a policy of transparency.
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Digital tools
28 May 2021
Morocco: a new digital platform harnessing AI and data to make the labour market more fluid
A digital information platform covering the labour market, harnessing artificial intelligence (AI) and data, is going to be set up in Morocco, spearheaded by a consortium of private and public actors. This new tool will help inform the decision-making of the various actors in the labour market, in terms of job supply and demand as well as labour market regulation.
10 May 2021
France: Eurécia harnesses digital tools to steer its organisational transformation
Eurécia, the provider of human resource software, has added new functionalities to its in-house application from the second half of 2020 in order to foster the wellbeing of its staff – all of whom are working remotely due to the pandemic – as well as to help them organise themselves, keep their stress levels under control, and to support managers in their supervision of remote teams. These new digital tools are designed to facilitate communication, maintain the sense of collective and reinforce the...
29 April 2020
Great Britain: the government launches a training platform for furloughed employees during Covid-19
Called The Skills Toolkit, this free online learning system aims to enable the many Britons currently not in full time employment (c.f. article No. 11878) to acquire skills during the pandemic. “I want businesses to encourage their furloughed employees to use The Skills Toolkit to improve their knowledge, build their confidence and support their mental health so they have skills they need to succeed after the coronavirus outbreak,” said Education Secretary Gavin Williamson at the launch of the offer on...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
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HR practices
22 June 2021
Great Britain: retail giants join forces to advocate for and defend diversity
Eight retail giants, including the John Lewis Partnership and Sainsbury’s supermarkets, have come together to found this landmark “Diversity in Retail” (DiR) network, which represents some nearly 400,000 employees, and which aims to create a group-based template in a bid to increase diversity and inclusion at all levels in the retail industry.
17 June 2021
Great Britain: John Lewis Partnership introduces equal parental leave for all its employees
Six months of parental leave for all staff at the John Lewis Partnership group, regardless of the gender of the parent or the conditions of the child’s arrival. On 10 June the employee-owned retailer became the first major UK retailer to announce equal parental leave that will be paid for 14 weeks at 100%, followed by 12 weeks at 50%, and will become effective from this autumn. To be eligible, staff must have been working at the company for a year. Chair of the John Lewis Partnership, Dame Sharon White said,...
15 June 2021
United States: Facebook makes remote working a company-wide policy for its 60,000 employees
In an internal memo, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that from 15 June all staff will be able to work from home, if their job allows it and if their manager gives the green light. He added that he himself would probably spend half of his time at home in 2022. HR managers could potentially lower the remuneration level of those choosing to leave San Francisco for a lower cost of living elsewhere.
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Industrial relations
22 June 2021
Spain: Telefónica signs an agreement on telework and on the implementation of a four-day working week
Together, Telefónica management and the CCOO and UGT trade unions have reached an agreement in principle to extend the collective agreement covering the 18,400 employees of the company’s major subsidiaries (Telefónica de España, Móviles, and Soluciones de informática) until 2022. In it they have both agreed new arrangements for voluntary-based flexible work organization with the implementation of a hybrid activity that blends face-to-face and remote working, as well as providing for a pilot program that...
18 June 2021
France: insurance group La Mutuelle Générale promotes “open work” concept after unanimous agreement on remote work
An agreement on remote working has been signed at French insurance group La Mutuelle Générale, which has given itself three years to trial a new way of working. Signed unanimously on 11 May by five trade unions (CFDT, CFE-CGC, CGT, FO, UNSA), the agreement will allow employees to work remotely up to five days a week, but they will have to come to the office at least four days a month, spread over several weeks. Under the previous agreement on the topic, which was struck just before the health crisis, staff were...
15 June 2021
Switzerland: trade unions alliance calls for legislative regulations over teleworking
Adapting Switzerland’s labor legislation to accommodate the widespread use of teleworking arrangements is the stated goal of “platform“; the name of a trade union alliance* that in particular represents the services professions and counts some 88,000 members. The ‘platform’ members argue that regulating flexible working it an “urgent” matter in order for example to recognize the right to disconnect or to appropriately cover additional relevant employee expenses.
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Legal developments
23 June 2021
Colombia: working week lowered from 48 to 42 hours
On 17 June, Colombia’s House of Representatives overwhelmingly voted in favour (117 for and 8 against) of a bill ratifying a reduction in working hours. Tabled in October 2019 in the Senate by former president Alvaro Uribe, the bill met with government opposition (c.f. article No. 12276) although both are from the same political wing. A compromise was then secured between the Senate text that had sought a 40-hour working week and the government’s position. The law will be implemented in stages. From 48 legal...
22 June 2021
Russia: unvaccinated workers may be facing mandatory unpaid leave
As Russia registers a new peak in Covid-19 cases and as the inoculation campaign struggles to make progress, official authorities have made an unexpected announcement. Russian media is reporting that Minister of Labour, Anton Kotiakov has stated that in the regions where vaccination is mandatory, businesses may suspend staff who have not been vaccinated from work for the length of time corresponding to duration of the relevant decrees that have established the requirement. The Moscow region has taken steps in this...
21 June 2021
Belgium: bereavement leave extended from three to ten days
The bill tabled by Nahima Lanjri, member of the Belgian Chamber of Representatives and of the CD&V (Christian Democratic and Flemish) party, which will extend bereavement leave, was unanimously approved by the house on 17 June. The leave allowance for an individual whose child or spouse dies will be increased from three to ten days. The first three days are for the period between the death and funeral of the relative and the remaining seven days can be taken in the year following the death. Long-term foster...
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