Telefónica Spain is about to definitively close the extension of its second collective agreement of related companies (CEV) for another year, until the end of 2022. The operator has taken important steps, including some revolutionary ones, in the renewal of labor relations with the development of areas with great social demand such as teleworking and flexibility, due to their impact on the reconciliation of the work day and personal life. The changes will benefit a good part of the nearly 20,000 workers that make up Telefónica de España, Móviles y Soluciones, included in the agreement, but they also mark the way for other companies that can follow the lines drawn up by the telecom, many times a pioneer in these renovations.
The operator has entered a proposal in line with the four-day shift. Of course, with a salary reduction, as announced yesterday by Cinco Días. Thus, it has proposed the so-called Flexible Bonus Weekly Day, by which, on a voluntary basis, the employee may work 32 hours a week, eight hours a day from Monday to Thursday, without modifying the working day regime. Compared to the established day of 37.5 hours, there will be a reduction of 5.5 hours, although Telefónica has proposed to reduce one hour, about 20% of the aforementioned cut in fixed remuneration items. Of course, always in the business units in which it can be applied. The employee may reverse the situation with a one-month notice. The project will be launched with a three-month pilot test starting in October, and those interested will be able to apply for membership from July.
Another revolutionary point in the agreement will be the consecration of teleworking for the nearly 10,000 employees who can opt for this formula, beyond the forced generalization during the last year, due to the pandemic. Telefónica offers technology to companies for this type of activity, and now it is going to set an example for its use. The operator’s workers will be able to work remotely two days a week, 40% of the traditional weekly shift, above the one-day limit established in the previous labor agreement. The agreement proposal establishes the option of accumulating the days, the possibility of reversing the contract, as well as the provision of a computer, helmets, a corporate mobile line with unlimited data, or the inclusion of an ergonomic chair. The second home has also been recognized for the development of teleworking.
In any case, Telefónica has given the staff confidence; now, the successful implementation of teleworking is in the hands of the employees.
The agreement also includes a boost to smart work or work for employees who carry out their tasks on the go, including salespeople and engineers. Telefónica will provide more resources and equipment for these workers who require flexibility.
In the economic aspect, the agreement includes a salary increase of 1% less slippage, together with a bonus of 300 euros to be paid this October (150 consolidable for January 2022) and another 300 in October 2022, in this case not consolidable . The CPI clause is also maintained to compensate in the event that the rise in inflation reduces purchasing power.
In general terms, the accumulated wage increase in the whole of the years of validity of the agreement, between 2019 and 2022, exceeds 6%. The progress comes at a difficult time for Telefónica and the large operators, penalized by stiff competition and the growth of the low cost. However, it also comes at a time marked by the crisis generated by the pandemic, in which most of the workforce has had to work from home.
Finally, in this extension, a new Individual Employment Suspension Plan (PSI) has not been proposed, much awaited by the workforce. The company’s strategy, focused on debt reduction, has pushed this option away. In principle, if there are no changes, we will have to wait until 2023.