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Improving implementation of payback clauses from the perspective of the service trade union ver.di Dr. Roman Jaich Ver.di.

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Presentation on theme: "Improving implementation of payback clauses from the perspective of the service trade union ver.di Dr. Roman Jaich Ver.di."— Presentation transcript:

1 Improving implementation of payback clauses from the perspective of the service trade union ver.di Dr. Roman Jaich Ver.di

2 The legal situation In Germany, payback clauses are and will be only conceivable in terms of further training. However, they cannot be applied within the scope of apprenticeship as in this regard payback clauses are not permitted according to the vocational training act.

3 Perspectives: Payback clauses as an instrument of increasing the participation in further training? In general, the subject of further education has become increasingly important within the almost all German trade unions since the mid-1990s. It is the strategy of the unions that the topic of further training should be more and more governed by collective agreements. To achieve this goal in quite a range of sectors collective agreements on training were signed, e.g. in the metal industry, the chemical industry, in the public service, insurance sector, etc. So far payback clauses have played a subordinate role in such collective agreements. In particular, unions are aiming at basically negotiating and arranging the subject of further training together with the employers' associations.

4 Payback clauses – the unions perspective It is in the sense of payback clauses that the person who invests in human capital is the one who takes advantage from it. This encourages the employers to invest in the human capital of the employees. Such rules only make sense in case of longer periods of qualification measures. In case of a period of two months without obligation to work performance a maximum contract term of only one year can be agreed upon as a rule. How should then a contract term be in case of 3, 4 or 5 days? It makes little sense to agree contract terms of three or four months. This shows why the unions are only little interested in payback clauses.

5 The current situation of participation in further training (2007) participation rate Age19 – 2422 25 – 3431 35 – 4432 45 – 6422 school-leaving qualificationlow17 medium30 high37 Professional qualificationno occupational training8 apprenticeship26 Master craftman32 University40 BSW-AES 2007 (Berichtssystem Weiterbildung Adult Education Survey)

6 The position of the unions This clearly shows the problem groups, i.e. the groups whose participation in further training should be encouraged from the viewpoint of the unions: elderly employees, employees with a low school level and employees without a vocational qualification. Unions proceed from the fact that for such groups especially shorter measures of up to one week would be suitable. This can be clearly seen if you consider the signed collective agreements on training. In case periods of training have indeed been negotiated only a maximum of five days is probably agreed upon and therefore, commitment clauses make no sense, as the administrative effort is probably higher than the benefit. Therefore, unions are of the opinion that the level of participation of such groups can only be considerably increased for a long time if collective financial instruments – further training funds – will be introduced on the basis of collective agreements, similar to those of the building industry in Germany. The inspiration for this are the further training funds that have worked on a legal basis in France since the 1970s.

7 The position of the unions However, the situation is different when coping with current problems that are being discussed under the keyword of demographic change, especially with regard to the shortage of skilled workers. This refers to the further training of partly highly qualified employees such as dual study programmes for skilled workers. From the viewpoint of the unions it is also conceivable that a dual study programme is financed by the employer whose investment is guaranteed by a payback clause. Such provisions are also conceivable within the scope of collective agreements from the point of view of the unions. However, it should be taken into account that this is not top priority when unions negotiate on collective agreements on training with the respective employers.

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