Published on 13th July 2021
For almost two decades, EU Sectoral Social Dialogue has driven constructive results in the temporary agency work sector through joint projects, joint events and joint statements. None the least, it was also instrumental in the context of the Covid-19 crisis.
“Through the EU sectoral social dialogue, we have been able to identify, discuss and promote solutions to protect temporary agency workers, safeguard work and prepare for the economic and social recovery, as reflected in the Joint Recommendations we adopted with UNI-Europa in 2020”, explains Dr. Michael Freytag, Public Affairs Manager at the World Employment Confederation-Europe. “Joint research projects on online talent platform work in 2018 and on Social Innovation in the temporary agency work industry in 2020 have also provided strategic input into important EU employment and social policy debates.”
In its reply to the EU Social Partners Consultation on the Review of the EU Social Dialogue launched by the European Commission in May 2021, the World Employment Confederation-Europe however highlights a couple of challenges that EU sectoral social dialogue still faces. There remains a strong need for capacity building for sectoral social partners, respecting and reflecting the differences in the role of social dialogue and collective bargaining at national level of the EU Member States. A second main challenge for social partners is linked to the fast-changing world of work and the rise of diverse forms of work, digitalisation and the need for new skills.
Respecting the autonomy and needs of each sector
The World Employment Confederation-Europe considers the current EU framework for involving social partners in the EU policymaking as overall appropriate. Sometimes, the sequence and timing of consultations of social partners could be improved to allow also smaller sectoral social partner organisations to provide a contribution to the consultation process. With respect to the autonomous social dialogue activities, such as joint projects and research, a stronger focus could be laid on sharing and disseminating results also via websites and online tools at EU level.
The Covid-19 pandemic has forced social partners to move from physical EU sectoral social dialogue meetings to fully online webconference sessions. With the roll-out of vaccinations and moving beyond the immediate, Covid-19 crisis response, the European Commission should discuss with social partners which meetings require a physical presence and which can, and should, continue to be held online.
The European Commission’s support to social dialogue should respect the autonomy of social partners and the specific needs of each sector, based on the principle of equal support to all sectoral social dialogue committees. The World Employment Confederation-Europe would welcome if the European Commission would continue to support social partners in securing guest speakers for social dialogue meetings.
The World Employment Confederation-Europe represents the employers in the EU Sectoral Social Dialogue for temporary agency work. It has been actively involved with its counterpart, UNI-Europa, in the Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee on temporary agency work which celebrates this year its 20th anniversary.
The World Employment Confederation-Europe and UNI-Europa, EU Social Partners for the temporary agency work sector, put forward recommendations to foster social innovation drawing on the lessons learned from initiatives implemented ...Find out more
WEC-Europe and UNI-Europa, the European social partners for the temporary agency work industry, adopted joint recommendations demonstrating their commitment to protect workers, safeguard work and prepare for an inclusive economic ...Find out more