CAPE TOWN- The German government is set to push forward with a draft law that will give people the legal right to work from home when possible.
Labour Minister Hubertus Heil had previously advocated for remote work in 2019, and has since seen how successfully it operated during the coronavirus lockdown.
The Mobile Work Act aims to allow ‘home office’ or working from home when appropriate even after the pandemic ends. It will also give as many employees as possible the right to at least 24 days per year working from home.
Heil told the Financial Times that a draft law for the right to work from home will be proposed within the next few weeks and that it could “turn technological progress into social progress”.
“The question is how we can turn technological progress, new business models and higher productivity into progress not only for a few, but for many people,” said Heil.
Facebook, Microsoft and Twitter are among companies overhauling their remote-working policies.
A survey conducted in November 2019 found that from 3,500 remote workers from around the world, 98% said they wanted to continue work remotely at least sometimes, or for the rest of their working career.
In the United States, PwC’s Remote Work Survey found that 69% of financial services companies said they expect almost two-thirds of their workforce to be working from home once a week in the future. Pre-pandemic, this figure was 29%.
Many companies have concerns about the draft law because working from home will not be an option for all. A study conducted in the US found that gender disparities were an issue where working mothers spent more time doing housework and looking after children than fathers.
For LIVE updates on the Coronavirus pandemic, follow us on Twitter : @sacoronamonitor