October 24, 2020

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The FNV wants to enter into new collective agreements with the employers on working from home NOW

The FNV wants to enter into new collective agreements with the employers on working from home NOW

The FNV union would like to include rules on working from home in future collective bargaining. The majority of union members consider this to be desirable. This is one of the findings of a comprehensive survey by the union among constituencies in the financial sector, local and national government and call centers.

The FNV put the question to around 9,400 members, as there is no end date in sight for the period in which many employees are asked to work from home if possible. For 55 percent of the workforce, nothing has changed since the government’s first call in March.

“Now that working from home is taking longer and employers and employees are realizing that it can, too, there is a new situation that requires new agreements,” said FNV Vice President Kitty Jong. “Also for the time after the corona.” In a work from home program, the union wants to record issues such as compensation, materials, work-life balance agreements, and the right to work from home and work in the office.

“What can you agree on to keep the workload from increasing? What are the additional costs and can you work from home?” Are questions to which the FNV would like to anchor the answers in collective agreements.

The union’s survey of members shows that two thirds of them enjoy working from home. Less than one in five experiences the opposite. Obviously the biggest benefit of working from home is the elimination of travel time. Three quarters are satisfied with it.

Better concentration, higher productivity and more freedom in organizing work also score points. The lack of colleagues and the social interaction that comes with it is seen as the main disadvantage of working from home.

Members also want the right to work in the office

Older employees in particular benefit from working from home. Younger employees less. Part of this could be because they are more likely to have young children or live smaller. The younger employees miss their co-workers the most, although remote collaboration is more beneficial for them.

The vast majority of FNV members would like to keep switching between home work and the office in the future. Almost half of the members also want the right to work in the office. “A home work program is tailored to each sector,” says FNV Vice President Jong. “Different agreements apply everywhere, for example on the associated travel costs.”

From September the FNV will be discussing a new collective agreement with employers in the financial sector in which the home work system will be included in the negotiations for the first time.