After a lengthy parliamentary procedure, provisions favoring the flexible articulation of subordinate work in times and places have been transformed into state regulations, thanks to the entry into force of Law No. 81 of May 22, 2017.
In particular, the previously mentioned law went on to regulate the matter of “agile work” (or smart working) considered as a new flexible way of executing the subordinate employment relationship in any place and at any time of the day where a tool (tablet, smartphone, etc.) capable of connecting to the network is available.
In the intentions of the legislature, the purpose was to increase productivity, facilitate work-life balance and accompany the profound cultural change taking place in the conception of work.
A worker can be defined as smartworking when he or she enjoys hourly flexibility and the workstation is variable. This distinguishes it from teleworking, which involves rigid working hours and a fixed workstation.
Having introduced the premises, let’s go on to understand how it works at the bureaucratic level.
A systematic interpretation of Article 18 of Law No. 81/2017 shows that the institution of agile work hinges on the voluntariness of the contracting parties, according to which the agreement of the parties and its formalization in writing is necessary for its viability.
The decree-law cd. Relaunch (Decree-Law No. 34 of May 19, 2020) reiterates (Article 90 co. 4) that the agile work mode governed by Articles 18 to 23 of Law No. 81 of May 22, 2017, can be applied by private employers to any employment relationship even in the absence of the individual agreements provided therein (so-called simplified mode).
It is sufficient a simple online operation that the employer can carry out. With the inclusion of paragraph 2 bis in Decree Law No. 18/2020 is extended until August 31, 2022 the possibility of communicating employees in smart working in the private sector with this simplified procedure already in use (for which it is not necessary to attach any agreement with the worker), using only the forms (Model for the communication of the ‘list of workers concerned) and the computer application made available by the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy.
As part of the interventions regulated by the above-mentioned measure, among other measures, the Conversion Law provides for the extension from March 31, 2022, to June 30, 2022, of the right of so-called “fragile” public and private employees to perform work in agile mode when this is compatible with the characteristics of the service itself. The longer deadline of July 31 applies for certain categories of workers listed in No. 2 of Annex B of the decree under review.
The extension concerns individuals in possession of the recognition of disability with connotation of seriousness, pursuant to Article 3, paragraph 3, of Law No. 104 of 1992 and certification attesting to a risk condition resulting from immunodepression or outcomes of oncological diseases or the performance of related life-saving therapies.
Also postponed to July 31, 2022 is the obligation of public and private employers to ensure the safe conduct of production and business activities by ensuring exceptional health surveillance of workers most exposed to the risk of contagion due to agè or risk condition resulting from particular diseases.
Finally, Article 10(2) of the decree-law under review extends until July 31, 2022 the possibility for employed parents in the private sector who have at least one child under the age of 14 to use agile work in a simplified form.