As we announced in previous articles, the period of confinement will leave an indelible mark on our relationship to work. Or rather to our work environment, because exercising at home (we also say teleworking) suddenly became an essential option. Last August, the number of job offers offering this option had already doubled in Quebec. The option of telecommuting is now part of the life of the company, like it or not. Telework or hybrid work, which seems to be the most successful formula. Hybrid work, that is, a few days at the office and a few days at home.
These new organizations represent a colossal challenge for companies. Whether in terms of infrastructure, regulations … Professionals testify to the impact of these changes for decision-makers and human resources professionals. And, as the upheaval is consequent, try to provide some answers. Selected pieces.
Do the regulations yourself to avoid any imbalance in social relations?
The teleworking activity falls within the scope of Article L 1222-9 of the Labor Code. It provides that this activity “is set up by a collective agreement or within the framework of a charter drawn up by the employer after consulting the social and economic committee”. Basically, the article leaves it to the collective agreements negotiated within companies to regulate. However, an employer can refuse to grant telework to an employee. Even if his position is eligible for this organization under the collective agreement or the charter. He must then justify his refusal in a legitimate way by basing it on objective criteria and reasons.
Comprehensive teleworking legislation seems more difficult to establish than at first glance. According to the European Foundation for the Improvement of Working Conditions (Eurofound), there are no less than 9 different trends concerning the organization of work (full telework, hybrid …). It is therefore important to understand a complex situation before legislating. Because the change in the way of working also impacts the social fabric formed by the employees.
For Martin Delage, an expert deploying the organization of teleworking at the Laval Integrated Health and Social Services Center in Canada, the risk of a division within the company is real. “We risk ending up with two classes of employees: those who are lucky enough to work from home and those who have to come to the office, because their tasks cannot be accomplished remotely,” he warns. A balance of social relations that seems possible thanks to internal company legislation. Just don’t forget it.
The end of corporate culture?
Katie Bussières, president of Nubik, an IT firm that works 100% virtually, does not advocate a teleworking policy that gives employees carte blanche to come to the office or not. “How do you build a corporate culture if some employees decide to always stay at home? “. Opinion which seems to be shared by French business decision-makers. The loss of corporate culture is, along with the lack of control over teams, their number one fear. The more optimistic say that technology can overcome this.
Julie Tardif, CRHA, co-founder of the human resources consulting firm Iceberg Management, points out that teleconferencing tools have evolved in terms of quality. They perfectly allow, according to her, colleagues to conduct a fluid conversation from a distance. The use of tools like Slack (multiple conversation platform with the possibility of calling) Zoom or Skype (video conferencing) has also jumped in 2020.
The impact of new work organizations is colossal for businesses. Who must adapt to the pace, if only to continue to recruit the best talent. The future seems to be very flexible.