Home Office: employee, consultant or partner?

These pandemic times have been bringing us to a new concept regarding to the labor relations. Who can or is enabled to work in a home office mode? What will be the “new normal” in labor related matters?

Competence, trust, and responsibility, among others, are attributes of those who could offer knowledge in form of a home office service and, for this, would not need to be a “card-carrying” employee but only a consultant. Even with full time dedication. Also, in small service companies, these activities could be shared by partners, as part of the collective social responsibility of a firm formed by its peers. However, partial relationships could arise, where the home office activity could be alternated with commuting to the location of the contracting firm.

How does it look now the classic old labor style employee? A new definition would have to emerge redefining these functions among the various actors of the new labor market which is supposed to follow the pandemic. But, will there be an attitude of the Government and Congress matching this? Will the legal and political systems be in conditions to see what has happened in these months in the suffering private sector?

All the precautions are needed. We must turn on an alert when returning to the new normal: due to misinterpretations of the home office concept or due to legal gaps, malicious demands for rent, electricity and internet bills may appear due to the work done by employees in their own homes. Also, for overtime and psychological problems. Just to name a few sources of potential demands that could arise from the backward fiscal and legal environments in Brazil.

In a chaotic atmosphere in sanitary, political and economic terms, caution should be called so that mining, among other sectors, does not have to pay an extra heavy bill precisely for protecting the activity (and the salary) and the health of its employees.

Meanwhile, the richest became even richer. Weird pandemic!

Alexis Yovanovic

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