The day after work

10 avril 2020

In 2000, we switched to 35 hours without any real reflection on work and work organisation. In companies, factors of exposure to existing but latent risks have been discovered, such as psychosocial risks (PSR), musculoskeletal disorders (MSD) and the somatic side of these psychological disorders, which are poorly understood in their psychosomatic approach. Nothing has changed, we had to rush to be in the liner of the economy and globalisation… The question raised by Bruno Latour in his recent contribution[1] appears to be essential: should all identical productions be resumed as soon as possible?

« Especially not, » he suggests as a citizen cry that seems to be the basis of an essential reflection that should be carried out collectively so that the economic recovery, once the world crisis has passed, does not bring back the same old regime of production, management, work for which everyone tries in vain to understand, or to fight against.

Since the beginning of the lockdown, many employees have discovered teleworking. This way of working has been debated for many years and raises the questions of efficiency, the value produced, the quality of work, autonomy, the division between professional and personal life. The lockdown further accentuates what in fact is working from home. Indeed, it happens in family where it is necessary both to ensure his professional daily life but also his personal and family daily life. It is necessary to meet the requirements of its activity but also the requirements of the family proximity without interruption and if the space does not allow it … We can imagine the tensions that imposed proximity generates in both adults and children. The factors of exposure to the risks of PSR are multiplied and the avenues of prevention and solutions very meagre.

But confinement is also an experiment in real scale and in large numbers of professional experiences that already exist and an opportunity to reflect on human work, its objects, its conditions of exercise, the recognition of the values that are produced …

Also, SWMI in the respect of its principles of controversy on the work suggests to engage in a double collective reflection around today’s telework and more broadly the day after work. The President of the Republic tells us that nothing will be the same as before. So what will happen to the work of tomorrow when everyone will have for some practiced teleworking, for others innovation in the face of shortages of all kinds, for others still autonomy and initiatives in the organization of work to cope with absences in large numbers. And all this with a rediscovered sense of their work and a recognition of the population (applause on the balcony or at the passage of garbage collectors, small attentions for cashiers …) Will it be necessary to forget all this, to store everything in the back of the closet, or on the contrary to bounce back on these escapes towards a quality of work found, of which we can be proud. So many questions that can be enriched by those you will be able to propose. The objective is to share our thoughts on the certainly essential evolutions of tomorrow’s work while respecting the health and safety of all and respecting a recovery more focused on the sustainable development of our economy.

Executives, intermediate professions, employees, but also retirees we are on the front line to face the crisis and reorganize the activity by protecting the teams. The number one challenge, as the public authorities have hammered, is to protect our health today in the face of the epidemic. But what about occupational health tomorrow if we do not take advantage of what we have learned from this episode of crisis?


Restitution of investigation

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