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5 November 2019
Japan : Microsoft 4-day working week trial to promote ‘life choices at work’ and speed up changing attitudes
Over the course of August 2019, the 2,300 staff at Microsoft’s Japanese headquarters tried out working on a 4-day per week basis, when they worked for four consecutive days and did not work on Fridays, Saturdays, or Sundays (Microsoft statement here – in Japanese). The trial run was part of the company’s ‘summer challenge’, aimed at improving work-life balance, and that included funding support depending on how workers invested in their free time activities. For instance, funding was available for those...
23 October 2019
Great Britain : 30 major businesses commit to mental health
Thirty employers including banking names Santander Bank, Barclays Bank and Lloyds Banking Group, the Royal Mail, multinationals such as Unilever, and the advisory firm Deloitte have promised to recognize the importance of mental health at work and have signed the Mental Health at Work Commitment. This landmark agreement includes six core commitments stemming and formulated from the 2017 UK Government commissioned report, Thriving at Work (c.f. article No. 10928). The first commitment is to prioritize mental health...
24 September 2019
Argentina: navigating HR policies within an extremely unstable economic context
Against the backdrop of instability born of an economic crisis in full swing and a political landscape undergoing profound change what challenges are facing Argentina’s human resources sector? Digital transitioning, gender parity, training, and social partner dialogue for instance, are all priorities common to many other economies. However one detail dominates in Argentina and that is the fact that since 2018 the country has been in recession and for several years has had to cope with both runaway inflation (55%...
23 May 2019
Italy: collective negotiations are starting to introduce the right to disconnect from work
In Italy there is a longstanding tradition of overlooking the right to disconnect from work and the right does not feature in overall labor regulation. It does however feature in the law that frames smart working (c.f. articles No. 10206 and No. 10886), by which is meant working outside of company premises for one to two days per week. An increasing prevalence of agile work and the growth of technologies enabling remote working has spurred Italy’s social partners to address the ‘disconnect’ topic, and ahead...
17 May 2019
Germany: at SAP job sharing is possible at all hierarchical levels from basic employee right up to senior executive
Since the start of 2018 all senior managerial positions at Germany’s multinational software corporation SAP have in principle been available for job sharing and flexible working opportunities. Since March 2019, SAP has gone one step further so that now all work positions at the company will be able to be shared between two workers operating in tandem, so what had formerly been an option at SAP has now become a right. Cawa Younosi, HR Head at SAP Deutschland and SAP SE in Germany is renowned for his revolutionary...
6 December 2018
Great Britain: Is business paving the way for better mental health?
In the past few years the issue of workplace mental health has come to the fore in the UK. Mental health first aid training, manager awareness packs, even the Mental Health at Work website launched by the Royal Family testify to this fresh focus. Every month new initiatives are launched that suggests a real revolution is occurring to bring into the light what was hitherto an engrained taboo subject. Are these efforts enough however to make a dent in what is becoming a widespread phenomenon and at a time when...
21 November 2018
Great Britain: Aviva’s parental leave for second parents program proves successful
Introduced just a year ago (c.f. article No. 10475) Aviva’s second parent parental leave program that allows all employees who become parents regardless of gender to take a fixed period of paid leave has proved particularly popular among fathers in the five countries across which the program has been initially deployed (paid leave of 10 weeks in France, 26 weeks in the UK, 12 weeks in Canada, 18 weeks in Ireland, and 16 weeks in Singapore). Aviva’s leap of faith seems to have worked, at least in the UK (in...
7 November 2018
Italy: ‘smart working’ is on the rise
According to the annual report published on 30 October by the Politecnico di Milano School of Management Observatory, over a year after the approval of Law 81 2017 that regulated ‘agile working’, where employees could work one or two days per week away from the company’s premises, (c.f. article No. 10206), the popularity of smart working continues apace with almost ½ a million (480,000) ‘smart workers’ (+20% compared with a year earlier) now operating across the economy and with more than half of the country’s large companies now offering specific smart working projects.
17 October 2018
Germany: status report on the ZEITREICH (Time-Rich) project that aims to support SMEs achieve working time solutions, which benefit both their and their employees’ interests
While Germany’s working-time debate continues apace and the country’s trade unions seek working time arrangements that include employees’ needs alongside company profits, the ZEITREICH (Time-Rich) project continues its pioneering progress. Launched in July 2016 with backing from the German Labor Minister, ZEITREICH seeks to assist SMEs devise, test, and implement innovative...
14 March 2018
SAP: the 22,000 German-based employees at this software company can now work wherever they wish, in the office, at home or elsewhere
SAP Germany has a longstanding tradition of teleworking and ‘confidence-based working time’. Nonetheless the German enterprise-software giant has decided to go further and make its working organization even more flexible. It has signed a company agreement on mobile working with its Works Council, which it made public on 01 March and which allows all of its employees working in Germany to work where they wish; in the office, at home or in any work place within Germany. SAP is looking to both support employees...