Work/Life – 7 / 52 观点
Welcome to the latest edition of our international employment news update.
The Gender Diversity Index tracks businesses' progress in appointing women to boards and supervisory boards of committees. Across all businesses in the 19 European countries surveyed last year, women made up 35 per cent of corporate board seats. Dutch boardroom gender diversity was just above the European average, with 37 per cent of directors and supervisors being women. The results come after a bill was passed in the Netherlands last year that established a quota on the number of women on supervisory boards in listed companies.
Around 30 British companies are planning to take part in a 6-month pilot scheme where employees only work four days a week for the same pay. It is led by 4 Day Week Global and requires participants to work with at least 100 per cent productivity. Researchers will analyse productivity levels and the impact of the scheme on wellbeing, environment and gender equality. Similar schemes are also being launched in the US, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand and Australia. The Scottish and Spanish governments have separately launched their own 4-day week pilot schemes.
From 24 January 2022, French people will need a 'vaccine pass' in order to access public transport and publics places including professional congresses. The bill implementing the vaccine pass also gives the French government the ability to fine companies that do not take appropriate measures to protect their employees against Covid-19. This includes adhering to the current government requirement that employees must work from home at least 3 / 4 days per week where their function allows it (though note that from 2 February 2022, this mandatory measure will become a recommendation only). Where employers are not taking measures and have received formal notice of this from a labour inspector, they may be ordered to pay a fine of up to €500 per employee with a total fine limit of €50,000.
Banks have taken the lead in asking their employees to return to the office following the English government's latest change in Covid-19 guidance. HSBC announced that staff would be welcome back in their offices with immediate effect and Citigroup have told their employees that they are 'expected to be in the office at least three days a week'. The change in government guidelines comes after a poll by recruitment firm Robert Walters identified that two-thirds of white-collar workers in the UK are apparently 'highly likely' to leave their role if they do not get more face-to-face time with their manager. The poll also revealed that almost two-thirds of professionals said they would reject a job offer if it required working from home full-time.
As some UK companies announce they will no longer pay company sick pay rates to their unvaccinated employees if they are required to self-isolate for 10 days or test positive for Covid-19. Retailer John Lewis have said that its staff will continue to receive full sick pay regardless of vaccination status. The company's operations director said that 'we just don't believe it's right to create a link between a partner's vaccination status and the pay they receive' and 'with hopes rising that the pandemic phase of Covid may be coming to an end – we're confident that this is the right approach for us'.
The number of people off work sick was ‘exceptionally’ high in the Netherlands in December 2021 with an absenteeism rate of 4.9%. The healthcare, education and construction sectors were the hardest hit and supermarkets have warned that customers will soon be faced with empty shelves because of staff absences. Covid-19 accounted for around one third of absences.
The annual employee satisfaction survey by Glassdoor, the employer review site, has revealed that German employees at technology companies have the highest satisfaction levels. Salesforce, the technology company, reported the highest level of employee satisfaction whilst Google sits in close second. A number of big German businesses such as Mercedes, Porsche and SAP are ranked in the top 10. Procter & Gamble and Boehringer Ingelheim were newcomers to the top 25 in this year's results. The survey used an algorithm which evaluated employees' reviews from October 2020 to October 2021 and analysed several things including overall company rating, work-life balance, and compensation and benefits.
As labour shortages continue to pose problems in the Netherlands due to strong economic growth and an aging population, HR managers, IT specialists, landscapers, installation workers and technicians are in high demand according to a survey conducted by the employment agency Randstad. There is also a significant need for teachers, psychologists, delivery staff and customer service employees. Randstad expects more people to move jobs this year as a result of the continuing labour shortages.