Transitions through workplace innovation
Investing in good jobs and employees is crucial to negotiating the green and digital transitions
2022 – In de Europese newsletter Social Europe a contribution by Frank Pot and Peter Totterdill, members of the European Workplace Innovation Network (EUWIN). They argue that ‘WorkPlace Innovation’ (WPI) is also essential for new challenges such as the green and digital transitions.
In the EU, there has been a growing awareness over the past decade that, in addition to technical innovation, organisational innovation is important. Research has repeatedly shown that WPI is good for the performance of organisations. And the sustainable gain of WPI for both companies and public organizations is that it contributes to strengthening the workforce; workers who are involved in improving the business in all its aspects and who carry out their tasks in the best possible way.
Yet the 2019 European Company Survey found that only 20 per cent of establishments in the EU-27 were characterised by ‘high investment in jobs and people and high involvement’. Many reasons can be adduced: convention, lack of knowledge, preference for ‘command and control’ management instead of ‘participation and trust’, adversarial industrial relations and so on.
An important lesson is that WPI is not automatically promoted by the market; and that it needs constant attention and encouragement from policymakers as well.
Frank Pot and Peter Totterdill; in Social Europe, 23rd February 2022.