At Volkswagen, employee representatives and company management have adopted a series of new rules for mobile working from home or on the go.
Employees should be able to take up to four “mobile working days” per week in areas in which this is feasible after the end of the pandemic situation. Works council chief Daniela Cavallo had announced the update and addition of a corresponding works agreement after taking office in spring as a central project – also looking back on the home office experience in the Corona crisis.
Some approaches of the new model are already based on regulations from 2016. There is no general entitlement to mobile work, individual agreements between employees and managers are always necessary – and this “taking into account the operational requirements”. The work result must not suffer, for example from being away from the home.
What is essentially new is the maximum number of four “mobile” days per full-time working week and flexible distribution over the respective working month. Works council vice Gerardo Scarpino made it clear on Wednesday: “The resulting new freedom ensures that the company cannot force mobile work.”
Since the beginning of the virus crisis, many employees at VW had moved from the office to their own four walls – especially in administration, development, staff departments and other so-called indirect areas outside of production. Cavallo called for concepts with more flexibility to be found for the workforce on the production lines, for example through the equalization of shift schedules.
Regarding the model now presented, Human Resources Director Gunnar Kilian said that the workforce had achieved great things in the pandemic and “contributed to maintaining our business operations”. In addition to working from home, however, many also expressed the wish to work with colleagues at the location in the presence of people. After Corona, the right balance between flexibility “and the interaction in the office that is essential for our further transformation” is still important. Then the model of a “hybrid work” could succeed. (dpa / rs)