Lessons from the pandemic: Prime ministers want to expand home offices

One of the major concerns of the Prime Minister’s Conference (MPK), which ended on Friday in Koenigswinter, was to “learn lessons from the pandemic”. The heads of government of the federal states have passed two resolutions on this. Accordingly, they want to promote the “crisis resilience of the state, administration and economy” and, for example, seize the opportunities offered by “an expanded range of home offices”. Such a system allows “more flexibility in the organization of work” and improves the compatibility of work and family.

The coronavirus pandemic has, according to the decision in many areas it has already led to a significantly greater adaptability “in relation to the place of work, working hours and work organization”. Home office rules have “made a substantial contribution to curbing the occurrence of infections”. At the same time, it has been shown that “the location-independent, digitally supported work has often worked much better than was generally expected at the beginning”. This knowledge will lastingly change parts of the world of work beyond the pandemic.

The federal states now want to use the advantages of teleworking “not least to increase the attractiveness of the public service”. Home office and other forms of mobile work also offer special potential for rural areas, according to the heads of government: “By eliminating commuting, they also make a contribution to climate protection.” The same applies to decentralized forms of work such as co-working spaces. They should therefore “be looked at even more closely when ensuring equal living conditions”.

The minister-presidents also demand that the federal government make an even greater contribution “with regard to the expansion and further development of warning devices for the population. They welcome the funding program for the expansion of the siren network of the Federal Office for Civil Protection and Disaster Risk Reduction. only a first step for the long-term participation of the federal government in the financing of the expansion of the municipal siren networks, which is also of importance for civil protection “.

According to the second paper the pandemic made clear the need to “offer barrier-free, standardized or compatible digital solutions equipped with the necessary interfaces for certain areas of life that can be used very quickly across borders”. The IT planning council should therefore submit proposals by March 2022 on how such processes could be managed even better.

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