May 23, 2017

Are we ready for the digital transformation of the workplace?

Digitalization affects all areas of life. The structural changes accompanying this digital transformation will inevitably reach enterprises and employees as well. But: does the current legal framework for employment in Germany live up to the new digital possibilities and the changing needs of employers and employees? This question is considered in the White Paper “Work 4.0” recently published by the German Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs.

To secure the competitiveness of Bavarian enterprises in the future, vbw – The Bavarian Industry Association advocates necessary adjustments of the legal framework. In order to meet the requirements of future work environments employers and employees need more flexibility and creative leeway, e. g. regarding the management of working time or the statutory requirements for data processing. A comprehensive summary of our political claims concerning a modern labor law can be found in the German position paper “Der Mensch in der digitalen Arbeitswelt” (Man in the digital working world). In addition, we organize discussion panels with entrepreneuers, politicians, scientists and trade union representatives to postulate our claims.

Our most recent two-day Metalworking and Electrical Industry Forum 2017 last month was all about new challenges of the digitization process. Representatives of Siemens AG, BMW, SAP, TU Munich, Fraunhofer Institut and others discussed their perspectives on this transformation. Companies and research institutions are very committed to a sustainable and innovative value chain in order to secure jobs and prosperity in Bavaria and Germany. As Alfred Gaffal, President of bayme vbm vbw, put it: “We have to consider digital transformation as an opportunity and must play an active part in this comprehensive technical revolution.”


Julius Jacoby

Arbeitsrecht, Wirtschaftsrecht, Internationales Recht

Julius Jacoby