Written answers

Thursday, 3 June 2021

Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment

Flexible Work Practices

Photo of Christopher O'SullivanChristopher O'Sullivan (Cork South West, Fianna Fail)
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90. To ask the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment the initiatives he is taking to facilitate hybrid working; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30063/21]

Photo of Leo VaradkarLeo Varadkar (Dublin West, Fine Gael)
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My Department is committed to facilitating remote work adoption in a way that reaps the many benefits and mitigates any potential negative impacts. Many actions to facilitate remote working will also facilitate hybrid working.

To promote remote work, my Department launched a Guidance for Working Remotely webpage

(enterprise.gov.ie/en/What-We-Do/Workplace-and-Skills/Remote-Working/Guidance-for-working-remotely.html).

This webpage acts as a central access point for employers and employees. It brings together the existing State guidance, legislation and advice on remote work into one place. The webpage also includes an employer checklist to provide employers with a quick way to navigate the adoption of remote working arrangements.

This year, on January 15, my Department published ‘Making Remote Work’, the National Remote Work Strategy. The objective of the Strategy is to ensure that remote work is a permanent feature in the Irish workplace in a way that maximises economic, social and environmental benefits. The report is built on three pillars which are bolstered by underpinning conditions. These pillars are:

1. Create a Conducive Environment

2. Develop and Leverage a Remote Work Infrastructure

3. Build a Remote Work Policy and Guidance Framework

Under these pillars and the underpinning conditions there are 15 actions to progress remote working into the future. The Strategy outlines the Departments and State Agencies responsible for the delivery of each of the actions. Each of these actions has a deadline of Q1, 3, or 4 of this year.

My Department is leading on the implementation of the Strategy. Lead actors report the progress on their actions to the Interdepartmental Group on Remote Work. This Group has met twice to date this year, with the most recent meeting taking place last week, on May 27th. At this meeting it was established that actions to date have been met and that progress is underway to achieving the remaining actions by the end of the year. The Group will continue to meet as the year progresses to drive the implementation of the Strategy.

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