Four-day weeks, staggered start times and DOUBLE annual leave: the huge changes that could affect every Australian worker after the pandemic
- Fair Work Commission has proposed a draft to change prices after COVID-19
- Clauses include home working arrangements such as start times and location
- Research found that 46 percent of Australians are more productive at home
- But many Australian workers have indicated that they would like to return to the office
- Working from home has also ruined the CBD economies with a massive drop in visitor numbers
Employees would soon be able to work only four days a week or enjoy more annual vacation than ever before if proposals for flexible working from home get the green light.
Employees and bosses will be able to negotiate flexible home working arrangements during the coronavirus pandemic at the suggestion of the Fair Work Commission.
But there are concerns that the generous new working model designed to help Australians get back to the office during the pandemic could bankrupt small businesses that depend on attendance.
Fair Work Commission chairman Iain Ross has released a draft plan to change pay, including a provision that allows for work-from-home arrangements that “ balance personal and work responsibilities ” with the employer’s business needs.
The Fair Work Commission has proposed a draft to change post-COVID-19 rewards to include home work clauses including double annual leave (photo, a woman on vacation)
Employees could compress their week, so the usual hours are worked over fewer days as long as the usual workload is full.
Start and end times can also be spread and employees can be referred to work from home or at other locations.
Employees can even choose to take double the annual vacation for half the pay and also buy extra time off if the bosses agree.
With the agreement of three-quarters of the workforce, a cut in hours can be shared if an employer cannot make good use of all employees.
Justice Ross said that working from home was one of the most significant shifts since the start of the pandemic.
“It is likely that the direct economic and social consequences of the pandemic will be felt for some time to come,” he said.
Contract additions can include work from home agreements such as start times, location and compressing your work hours to work fewer days (stock image)
Despite working from home, many Australian workers have indicated that they would like to return to the office. Pictured: A pedestrian with a face mask travels through Sydney CBD amid August’s coronavirus pandemic
“There will (probably) be a continuing need for flexible working arrangements to help employers and employees adapt to changed circumstances and to support recovery.”
The draft proposal could potentially be incorporated into modern awards, most of which do not explicitly relate to working from home.
HOW CAN CHANGE YOUR WORK LIFE:
The Fair Work Commission proposal could result in staff making reciprocal agreements with their employers on a range of flexible work measures.
Possible sanctions include:
– Employees who agree to align personal and work responsibilities with the needs of their employer
– The ability to compress your work week to work more hours on fewer days
– Changed start times and locations
– Taking double annual leave at half salary
The committee chairman said this could limit working from home if the company was forced to pay fines or overtime, despite employees seeking flexibility.
Australian Industry Group CEO Innes Willox said the concept was an important initiative that would provide flexibility.
“Many employees currently work from home, and it is clear that workplaces will never be the same again,” he said on Tuesday.
The economy is said to be suffering from an increase in home working, with small CBD businesses struggling with a lack of pedestrians due to fewer local workers.
The office vacancy rate in Sydney and Melbourne has risen dramatically over the past six months as companies stabilize on the enduring impact of the pandemic.
But many Australian workers have not indicated that they want to return to the office.
Research by office portal company Equiem found that 46 percent of Australians surveyed claimed to be more productive from home.
But some, like Sydney recruiter Jen Davis, long for office culture and the unity of a team environment.
“Being at home is great for getting through the workload, but I love being in the office for connecting with people who come in with me at the same time,” Ms. Davis said.
Ms. Davis believes that many employees enjoy being in the office for work to distinguish between their private and professional life.
“ Some people still believe that unless you are in the office, you are technically not working or there are questions about where you are and what you are doing, ” she said.
‘It has to be measured by output, instead of on location.’
Research shows 46 percent of Australians say they are more productive by working from home (stock image)