Europe has always set the path to innovative forms of Working, creating entirely new categories of jobs; they are at the front of human rights rules, preventing the worker from exploitation by their employers, a practice that continues these days. In addition, they experimented with different forms of business ownership, with a state-owned enterprise (SOE) formed by the government to participate in commercial activities and corporate structures that require businesses to consider their employees as their shareholders.
These Working patterns resulted in European workers’ better quality of life. However, Working benefits like mandatory paid holiday time, maternity and sick leave payment, over-working hours, and more are not necessarily the same in other countries. Europe ever-developing way of Working is constantly experimenting with new forms to improve the lives of its workers, eager to enhance productivity further whilst developing its economy.
Several business members consider these rights could be offensive to the free market. However, studies have demonstrated that these workers’ benefits and employees who spend more time remote-working are somehow the ones with the highest productivity levels—hereafter, some three projects could influence working in Europe.
Shorter commuting time
Supported by valuable tools such as Microsoft Teams and Zoom, employees working remotely at home or somewhere else invest less time and money commuting from home to the workplace. In doing so, the benefits to the environment are huge.
We consider that in many capital or overpopulated cities, the average time of commuting takes at least 60 to 102 minutes from home to office. The consequences are the loss of efficiency, waste of time, no way to get in time to business meetings, increasing pollution and many other effects. It is alarming the money they spend over their life span commuting to their job. Remote Working allows them to save almost double the average of their retirement pension.
· The worker will benefit by reducing the number of working hours per day in an office.
· The worker will spend less time sitting down in a car when commuting to their office.
· The time spent in front of a desk is eight or more hours, enhancing a passive position.
· Working long sessions drive health issues; they could avoid it if they offer a breakaway from desks to move and exercise.
· Workers can better balance everyday life through a more active lifestyle.
The Universal Basic Income
In recent years, there is around a revolutionary idea of a universal basic income. This proposal suggests that every individual receives monthly a money sum from the government, enough to shield their necessities and little else. Citizens would then be free to find the work they enjoy the most, take extra home earnings, start a venture, or donate to charities and other noble causes.
The supporters of this initiative claim that it could enhance working conditions, solve poverty, and change the lives of many by leveraging the labour market. However, detractors consider it would be too costly and will put off individuals from getting a job. The pilot outcomes are mixed. Results of the pilots mixed up, but the model is gaining adherents little by little.
The Four Day Week
It seems that the five-day working week has expired, the norm for around a century. With the industrialised lines, employers developed many tools to get more work done in a day while giving workers an extra day off to rest or spend with family. However, they only reduced the number of days, but they just packed complete tasks into working hours.
Spain begins a pilot project to relocate some businesses workers to a four-day working week to create a better-balanced work environment. This experiment is now in progress but, it could reproduce elsewhere; it is becoming much more attractive for other countries in Europe.
Summing up: if these initiatives proved viable, they could transform the European world of work, changing from top to bottom.
Do you find this ‘New normal working’ good for your business?
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