Under the leadership of Confimi Industria, Iresdes 4.0, project funded by the European Commission to support social dialogue and industrial relations has been lauched and a experts list will be selected from national and European social partners to establish a European stakeholder board. Focussing on smart working models and digital skills, the stakeholder board will work for 18 months and provide recommendations for upgrading labour agreements for an economy and a society 4.0
Last year, Confimi Apindustria Bergamo has supported businesses through the toughest time since the organisation’s founding over 50 years ago. The employers’ association, which nationally represents more than 40,000 companies that employ about a half-million people, helped businesses to navigate the extraordinarily difficult situation in Bergamo, which was among the regions hardest hit by COVID-19 in the world. “Over the course of last year, digital technology allowed us to reconcile production with organisational requirements to protect personnel”, remarked Paolo Agnelli, President of CONFIMI Industria. “But measures implemented during an emergency are not enough, nor should teleworking be mistaken for smart working. We must work to ensure that the method is regulated in order to guarantee both flexibility and profitable business management.”
“We need to devise a new model of collective bargaining that is less confrontational and more synergistic, that takes into account the major issue of sustainability, and that manages to strike the right balance between social justice and business competitiveness”, as Domenico Galia, President of CONFIMI Industria Digitale, put it. “To achieve such a contractual model, a major cultural change is needed, as is the case for all social and economic processes.”
The project partners Confimi Industria and DIGITAL SME will be joined by labour research centre ADAPT Associazione and trade union FIM-CISL Veneto, and supported by IndustriALL Europe, an umbrella organisation representing independent and democratic trade unions. As a first step towards modernising labour agreements, partners will establish a European stakeholder board consisting of experts from employer and employee associations. The stakeholder board will carefully develop recommendations on how to include smart working provisions and a strong emphasis on digital skills development in labour agreements to ensure that businesses and workers benefit—in Italy and the whole of Europe!