On 6 December 2019, the Postal sector social partners met in their Social Dialogue Committee plenary session. The Social Dialogue Committee celebrated 20 years since its creation and adopted a Joint Statement on the review of the Postal Services Directive and a Joint Declaration on Training.
The Joint Statement on the review of the Postal Services Directive was adopted following the request for a joint position of the Post Social Dialogue Committee by DG GROW, responsible for the Postal Services Directive. The Joint Statement can be reviewed here.
The Joint Declaration on Training in the Digital Era was also adopted by the Post Social Dialogue Committee. The Joint Declaration sets the context and explains the significant value of training and re-training of employees has had in the postal transformation process.
The study “Mobilising Social Partners in a new context” implemented by the “Postal Sector Evolution” working group, which investigated the role of collective labour agreements in supporting the change in the sector also underlined the role that training plays in this transformation.
More recently, in line with training and skills development, the Committee has finalised the project “Promoting Social Dialogue in the Postal Sector in an enlarged Europe”, co-financed by the European Union and conducted from 2016 to 2018. With this initiative, it was possible to investigate the level of knowledge on European social dialogue among its members, also obtaining first-hand information on how employers and trade unions are managing the impact that new technologies, in particular digitisation, have on training and retraining programs for employees, the impact on work organisation, skills and training needs.
The European social partners, in line with the conclusions of the study “Promoting Social Dialogue in the postal sector in an enlarged Europe” believe that the analysis of digital skills for the performance of typical postal activities can contribute to a better understanding of the impact that new technologies have on the sector and on postal employment in terms of working conditions and work organisation patterns. This in turn points to the need to pursue an in-depth reflection on training and retraining methods to enable the highest degree of up-skilling as possible and to make use of the new digital skills in the most appropriate way.
The European postal social partners jointly committed to:
- Further promote among its members the knowledge of the European Social Dialogue Committee for the postal sector, stimulating their participation in its activities.
- Further encourage the dissemination and presentation of SDC conclusions and deliverables at national postal level. SDC members are aware of the importance to bring the outcomes of European training activities and reflections at national level and to influence where possible, those outcomes in national social dialogue practices.
- Continue to focus on the role of training, retraining and up-skilling of postal employees throughout the course of its work, in line with the past funded projects and related Joint Declarations;
- Concentrate their efforts on identifying digital skills useful to the new jobs that are characterising the sector as well as to all other classic activities of the postal sector;
- Analyse the impact of digitisation on the companies’ organization, working conditions and work environment;
- Encourage the diffusion of the conclusions and recommendations of related projects around Training to the national hoping to stimulate a fruitful social dialogue on these matters. Disseminate, also through the Committee’s website, all the material collected in order to facilitate the exchange of experiences among its members;
- Consolidate information exchanges with the Directorates General of the European Commission of reference and with relevant stakeholders for a better understanding of the process of change in the sector;
- Continue to monitor in the future, also through initiatives that could have the support of the European Commission the impact of digitisation on training and retraining in specific sector activities that require new and advanced skills, contributing in this way to stimulate best solutions for the sector.