TRIESTE From an emergency solution to stem the contagion to a permanent tool capable of raising the quality of life of employees and even productivity. Here is the evolution of smart working according to the Region and the Municipality of Trieste, which aim to make “agile work” structural even after the end of the Covid emergency, albeit with a lower percentage than the current one. But in Friuli Venezia Giulia there are also public bodies where experience has given less convincing results and where the goal is to return to 100 percent in attendance, with the exception of fragile employees who for health reasons will be able to opt for work among the domestic walls.
From almost 3,000 smart employees in March 2020 to 741 in the latest update, about one in five of the 3,400 employees of the Palazzo, including instrumental bodies. Pierpaolo Roberti, regional councilor for the civil service, photographs the evolution of work from home with the numbers, but specifies that it is a context that is still linked to the contingent. Another thing will be a structural evolution of the digital activity mode of the public administration, a building site yet to be opened, but on which there is absolute conviction. “In smart working due to the pandemic, the Region has continued to work at its best – says the commissioner -. Indeed, the loads were also heavier than usual given the period. But in perspective, it is a question of assessing the share of people to be made to work from home to improve the efficiency of the regional machine. If today’s is almost always nothing more than teleworking, the goal is to build a system that makes the smart structural in the services that are best suited to telematic management “.
Among other things, the council adhered to the Pola document (Agile work organization plan) to include smart working in the activities that contribute to measuring the performance of the regional administration. The Plan identifies the ways of implementing agile work by providing that, on paper, at least 60% of employees can make use of it, ensuring that they are not penalized for the purposes of recognition of professionalism and career progression.
«At the moment 50% of the 2,300 employees are in smart, with rotation commensurate with the needs of the managers of departments and services – says the municipal councilor for Human Resources of Trieste, Michele Lobianco -. At the peak of the pandemic we had reached 80% ». “When we are certain about the date on which the emergency phase will end – he specifies -, we will proceed with a determination to indicate the share of smart working that will continue to exist even after the emergency period has passed. The use of “agile work” will remain a tool that will go beyond Covid. After all, we had begun to prepare for the introduction of the smart already before the pandemic. One way to ensure a better quality of life for workers, helping to reconcile work with family life, I am thinking in particular of those who have children ». «In recent months we have found that the livello of productivity has even increased – adds Lobianco -. It is an evolution of the working model in the name of flexibility. From the point of view of health security, once out of the Covid risk, the smart option will allow an employee to continue working, staying at home, if they feel unwell. I thank the employees for their cooperation. It is a challenge they have been able to take on ».
For other municipalities such as Gorizia, Monfalcone and Udine, the goal is instead to gradually return to 100% of the work in presence, with some limited exceptions. «To date, the use of smart is 50%, but in the autumn everything will change – predicts the mayor of the Isonzo capital Rodolfo Ziberna – also because the number of vaccinated people will always be higher and the precautionary health needs will be very reduced, variants permitting. The smart does not allow to guarantee the same standard of services and in addition there have been employees to whom the managers have asked to return to work in presence and who have refused. Secretary General Maria Grazia De Rosa is checking whether it is already possible to increase the percentage of office workers. The goal is to return to 100% in attendance, even if perhaps it will be possible to evaluate the maintenance of the smart as an alternative option, even if limited, to returns in the afternoon ».
«We have already dropped to 20% of the staff in smart, on a rotating basis, and we have agreed with the trade unions that after the emergency we will return to 100% in attendance – announces the mayor of Monfalcone, Anna Maria Cisint -. The only exceptions are employees with frailty or with special needs to stay at home to look after sick family members. With us, the smart was not much appreciated and it was the employees themselves who said it ».
«We have decided to bring back as many employees as possible and those at home do not exceed 20% to date. There are services that are very difficult to provide in smart – explains the mayor of Udine Pietro Fontanini -, for example social assistance. The physical presence to carry out the practices is essential. I am critical of agile work because I see that there are those who take advantage of it and cannot be found. Controlling is difficult. There may be people with health frailties to whom we will grant the opportunity of the smart. I remember that we spent 300 thousand euros for laptops, about 250, plus the related programs, and the telephone bills increased. Of course, the services have continued the same in recent months and we have stemmed the contagion. But I don’t see other positive aspects ». In Pordenone the smart is between 20 and 25% and after the emergency it will be provided for fragile employees or those who have to assist family members at home.