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21 September 2021
France:  Le Groupe La Poste commits to combatting unemployment
French postal giant Le Groupe La Poste has been partnering with Lab2e (Fonds de Dotation Laboratoire des Entreprises Engagées – Committed Companies Lab Endowment Fund) since the association Solidarités Nouvelles Face au Chômage association (New Unemployment Solidarity association) first established the...
Corporate social responsibility
20 September 2021
United Kingdom: PwC reports its socio-economic background pay gap
As part of its annual report, published on 15 September, the professional services group PwC for the first time revealed the “socio-economic background” pay gap for its UK employees. The move comes just a week after industry competitor KPMG published its own socio-economic background pay gap and decided to set a minimum threshold for working class employees in senior positions (see article n°12670). PwC, which employs 22,000 people in the UK, also reported its disability pay gap for the first time.
10 September 2021
Great Britain: KPMG sets a minimum threshold for working class employees in senior positions
On 09 September the Anglo-Dutch consulting giant announced its ambition that by 2030, 29% of its partners and managers will be from working class backgrounds. This unprecedented decision is part of its ‘Our Impact’ ESG plan, and comes after an internal survey of the group found that people from working class backgrounds earn on average 8.6% less within the company.
7 September 2021
Great Britain: a parliamentary committee inquiry considers the issue of menopause at work
On July 23  2021 the UK House of Commons Women and Equalities Committee launched an inquiry to examine whether legislation and company practices adequately support women during menopause. According to the multi-stakeholder committee, more than one million female employees left their jobs due to menopausal symptoms. Many women’s careers are also disrupted during this period, which sometimes even prevents them from securing high-level positions during their 50s. “Despite the fact that hundreds of thousands...
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Digital tools
22 July 2021
France: “We want to develop our own artificial intelligence, which means having structured, efficient data”, Sophie Sanchez, CEO of Synergie (Interview)
French human resources group Synergie is implementing a digital transformation plan that is based on the establishment of a data lab that will develop its own artificial intelligence and is set to start in September 2021. Sophie Sanchez, Synergie’s CEO, has kindly set time aside to discuss the main thrusts of this four-year project with Planet Labor. The ultimate goal is to be able to...
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...
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HR practices
16 September 2021
Great Britain: Morrisons supermarkets cutting sick pay for unvaccinated employees who need to self-isolate
‘From 1 October, following UK government confirmation that all adults have had the opportunity to get double vaccinated, we will no longer be paying full sick pay for pinged colleagues who have chosen not to be vaccinated,’ the Morrisons supermarket chain announced. This lowering of sick pay will only affect employees who are not fully vaccinated and have to quarantine. Employees suffering Covid-19 symptoms and those who have not yet had the opportunity to be vaccinated and need to isolate will still be able...
Covid-19 Vaccination
15 September 2021
Spain: BBVA backing hybrid and flex office working
Since 01 September, Spanish bank BBVA has been organizing the gradual return of its employees to its central services premises, via a mix of physical in-office and remote working. Employees are required to spend 60% of their monthly working time physically in the office and 40% of their time working remotely. Formerly fixed workstation allocations have been replaced by a dynamic spatial use approach thanks to the implementation of a shared office reservation tool. This new way of working is currently  a temporary...
13 September 2021
India: Tata Steel recruits members of the transgender community for its mining sector activity
Indian steel giant Tata Steel recently posted job vacancies for heavy earth moving machine operators in the eastern mining state of Jharkhand that were only open to transgender applicants. This positive discrimination initiative is part of a broader trend. In India, large corporations are beginning to implement more inclusive policies for people from the LGBT community.
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Industrial relations
17 September 2021
Germany: Deutsche Bahn and train drivers’ union GDL reach compromise on trade union representation
German rail operator Deutsche Bahn (DB) and the GDL train drivers’ union have announced the signing of a new collective agreement, marking the end of a dispute that gave rise to repeated strike action. Signed on Thursday 16 September, the lengthy 32-month agreement provides for a 3.3% pay rise in two stages, as well as the payment of two so-called “coronavirus bonuses”. The two parties also reached a compromise as regards the application of the collective agreement unity law (Tarifeinheitsgesetz), which...
16 September 2021
Italy: ‘Historic’ agreement at Amazon establishing a labour relations system
On 15 September, and under the aegis of Italy’s Labour Minister, Amazon Logistica Srl together with the Filt-Cgil, Fit-Cisl and Uiltrasporti unions have signed what the labour bodies have termed a unique agreement at a world level. The protocol provides for the multinational distribution company to recognize and respect the logistics and parcel shipments sector collective agreement (c.f. article No. 12544). Initiatives will be taken to develop labour relations at the national level, including periodic...
14 September 2021
Spain: Telefónica organizes a gradual return to on-site working ahead of the implementation of its new hybrid work arrangements
Management at Telefónica together with the CCOO and UGT trade unions have agreed on terms for employees to start gradually returning to the office as of 27 September. The agreement provides that employees will be able to continue working remotely 60% of the time, i.e. 3 days per week, during a transition period that concludes on 31 December 2021. At the same time, the Spanish telecommunications operator will also, and again until the end of the year, trial a shorter four-day working week, where employees on these...
Four-day working week hybrid work
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Legal developments
21 September 2021
United States: joins the Equal Pay International Coalition
The United States has just joined the Equal Pay International Coalition (EPIC), an initiative led by the ILO (International Labour Organization), UN Women, and the OECD, the mission of which is to achieve equal pay for women and men for work of equal value by 2030. Although US President John F. Kennedy signed the Equality Act into law on 10 June 1963, nearly 60 years later in 2021, an 18%-20% pay gap still exists between both genders. According to the Department of Labor, this gap is even wider in black and...
21 September 2021
Belgium: a tool that can provide a company’s staff vaccination rate on an anonymous basis
Occupational physicians will soon be able to find out the vaccination rate of employees in companies with more than 50 staff. This is due to a tool currently being developed, which will cross-reference information from the National Social Security Office (NSSO) and Vaccinet, the database on vaccination status. According to the newspaper Le Soir, the employers’ organizations requested access to information on the percentage of vaccinated employees so that they could adapt their workplace health measures....
20 September 2021
EU: Commissioner for Jobs Nicolas Schmit gives update on projects in social sphere
With France set to take over the rotating European Union Council Presidency in the coming months, Nicolas Schmit, the European Commissioner for Jobs and Social Rights, made a trip to Paris to meet with meet ministers and social partners. Interviewed by members of the association of social news journalists (AJIS) on Friday 17 September, Schmit gave an update on the EU’s plans in the social sphere: minimum wages, vocational training, platforms and regulation of remote work. According to the Commissioner, these...
Remote work regulations
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