In recent weeks we have proposed an online survey, in 15 questions, on the long experience of smart working that Italy has experienced, due to the Covid 19 pandemic and the repeated lockdowns that have limited economic activities and movements in the country. Here, the result of the survey among Corriere.it readers (click for the results), to which nearly 10 thousand people responded. The questions were extracted from a wider survey that the Fim, the CISL mechanics union, proposes to its members: the investigation is still in progress and carried out with the collaboration of Adapt and Università Cattolica.
Several points for reflection emerged. On the right to disconnect we are not there – notes the general secretary of the Fim Cisl, Roberto Benaglia – Another delicate issue: three quarters of the respondents did not receive relief from the company on out-of-pocket expenses incurred to work from home. These answers tell us that there are very strong gaps that need to be filled. We need the intervention of bargaining. And continuing to extend smart working in an emergency does not help the negotiation of a stable structure.
Lack of organization and information in 49% of cases
Most of the respondents work in services. And this is in line with a way of working which by its nature is less widespread in the manufacturing sector. Half of the respondents (49%) did not receive information on agile work. This data tells us that it has been activated for more than half of the cases without any strategy, just to manage the emergency. What will happen next, since there was no organizational reasoning? everything to understand, says Emmanuele Massagli.
The amount of work increases in 66% of cases
66% say they have worked more hours than contractually stipulated and, in any case, more hours than they worked before. It is a widespread response, it coincides with other evidence on the matter – says Massagli -. It could be an enlarged personal perception and not a certainty, but it shows that basically when you are at home you don’t work less. Maybe you work worse or better, so the quality of work changes, but the amount of work does not decrease, if anything it increases thanks to the greater hourly availability.
Right to disconnect all to apply
61% of companies did not put in place any measures to encourage disconnection and did not inform workers about this right. One in five workers does not see the right to disconnect respected. In my opinion, workers are not informed not because they want to be deceived, but because the company management is also unaware of the subject. On the other hand, until yesterday we were all used to “normal” work, where the problem does not arise – says Massagli -. Of course, there remains the need to “disconnect”, not to remain connected 24 hours a day to company emergencies (by definition, there is always some urgency!), But companies still don’t know how to manage it.
Technology enters homes
The vast majority of companies have provided employees with PCs, tablets, headphones, smart cards, etc. It is a sign of responsibility, as well as, in many cases, a need for security. On the other hand, it can also be a sign of the fact that workers do not have their own computer devices at home suitable for work (moreover, in the months Covid the home PC was used for the DAD of the children). Covid proved to be a great opportunity for Italians to technologize – says Massagli – even if, unfortunately, it has not yet been an exploited opportunity for digital literacy, what else.
The mandatory disclosure still ignored in one out of two cases
The answer on the written information on safety at work deserves attention. This is one of the few legal obligations regarding smart working – underlines Massagli -. Among other things, a simple fulfillment. In companies where it was not delivered (48.7%) simply the agile work experience in place against the law would be sanctioned.
Loss of meal vouchers
37% of respondents lost their meal voucher or canteen. In my opinion, the law on agile work does not allow this, as it provides that the smar tworker receives the same overall remuneration as the worker on site, says Massagli. According to some judgments for the meal voucher as a benefit it would not be part of the overall salary. The debated question.
Domestic revolution and forced purchase of the PC
17% had to buy new IT devices, 18.5% had to buy new furniture, 27.5% had to reorganize the spaces in the house. Smart working has revolutionized domestic spaces, often imposing unexpected costs.