Nine out of ten employers facilitating remote working, survey finds

92 per cent of employers paving way towards remote working - task permitting
26 January 2021

Nine out of ten northern German employers (92 per cent) are facilitating remote working provided the work is suitable, a quick poll by the Nordmetall and AGV Nord employers' associations has found. More than 260 companies with over 100,000 employees were interviewed on January 21-22, 2021 for the survey. Around one in three workplaces in north German industry are suitable for remote and mobile working.

Half of businesses severely hit by restrictions

"If nine out of ten industrial companies offer mobile work, then employers have delivered. And many employees would deliver, if the framework conditions were better," said Nico Fickinger, General Manager of Nordmetall and AGV Nord. It is now up to the state to act especially in terms of digitalization and education. Around 44 per cent of respondents said their business operations have been impacted or severely impacted by the coronavirus-induced protective measures i.e. restrictions.  

Moreover, only about one in three workplaces is suitable for mobile working. Around 24,500 people or 67 per cent of employees in such workplaces are already availing of remote working. Around 33 per cent of employees, i.e. about 11,900 people, are not availing of the possibility at present. This applies to smaller companies and construction, logistics or production control that must be done at production facilities. Around 262 companies with over 100,000 employees in Hamburg, Schleswig-Holstein, Bremen, Mecklenburg-West Pomerania and north-western Lower Saxony took part in the survey. 

Remote working in Hamburg 

Firms in Hamburg have been urged to allow their employees to work remotely and to remain mobile wherever possible after Dr. Peter Tschentscher, Mayor of Hamburg, Anna Gallina, Senator for Consumer Protection and representatives of chambers and associations signed an agreement on remote working. Working from home should be the rule and employees should only be required to work in the actual company for valid reasons. Several good examples of remote working can be found in Hamburg. Around 2,500 of Beiersdorf’s employees are working remotely at present, the company said. Parents in need of a short break are availing of the "remote kindergarten" where their children are entertained. Other exemplary ideas include joint yoga classes or the so-called virtual "Lunch-Roulette".