Skip to main content

Ample self-determination for employees

The labour market and working life in Germany are changing. These changes have accelerated as a result of the Corona pandemic.
Mobiles Arbeiten
Andrey Popov/

Germany's world of work is undergoing a transformation, characterized by digitization, but also by increasing location-independence for many activities and by debates about new income models. The Corona pandemic has reinforced some of these trends.

A particularly important aspect here is remote working. Due to contact restrictions, the number of people working exclusively or partially from home increased to 18.8 million in 2020, and according to calculations by the digital association Bitkom, after the pandemic is over around one in three employed people in Germany will work entirely or partly from home. The Federal government Federal Government The Federal Government and cabinet is made up of the Federal Chancellor and the Federal Ministers. While the Chancellor holds the power to issue directives, the ministers have departmental powers, meaning that they independently run their respective ministries in the framework of those directives… Read more › now wants to establish regulations for remote working and a corresponding legislative initiative has been launched.

Flexible working hours models

When it comes to arranging working hours, too, many employees in Germany now have more influence than they did a few years ago. In addition to part-time work, so-called flexitime now makes it possible for them to decide for themselves, within certain parameters, when their working day begins and ends. Some companies are also allowing staff to “save up” some of their working hours in value credits so they can then use them for time off or for earlier retirement later on, for example. Added to which, employees have the right to reduce their working hours for a period of up to six months to care for a loved one.

One trend that has been halted for the time being by the Corona pandemic is increased mobility on the European labour market. Freedom of movement is one of the fundamental principles of the European Union European Union In 1957, the Federal Republic was one of the six founder members of the current European Union (EU). Since 2013, the EU has consisted of 28 member states and the euro is the official tender in 19 of them. Germany contributes about 20% to the EU budget. Günther Oettinger (CDU), the former Prime… Read more › , so for skilled workers, for example, migration within Europe plays a major role. Germany is an important destination country in this regard. The number of EU citizens from other countries registered here rose continually from 2013 up to the start of the pandemic, and experts predict it will continue to rise again afterwards.