Lamborghini and unions reach landmark pact for four-day week
In a first for the European car industry, working hours will be cut while wages will be raised
Rome — Lamborghini reached a deal with unions to introduce a four-day week for its production workers, the labour associations and the company said on Tuesday, as more manufacturing groups reconsider the structure of the work week for their employees.
The FIOM and FIM-CISL unions said the agreement is the first in the automotive industry in Europe to achieve a significant reduction in working hours without cutting wages, but rather increasing them.
The move comes while many companies and public offices are changing how people work to improve employee wellbeing and promote company savings after the Covid-19 pandemic and rising costs.
Similar four-day week schemes adopted in other European countries, such as the UK, have found that employees achieved more in less time, while job retention and recruitment improved and sickness levels fell.
“Work less and work better. This is the principle that guided this negotiation and which is part of a comprehensive reasoning,” a statement from FIOM and FIM-CISL reads.
Production workers on a rotating two-shift schedule will alternate a five-day week with a four-day week, overall cutting 22 days’ work each year, the unions said. Those on a three-shift rota, which includes night shifts, will have a five-day week alternated with two four-day weeks, cutting their yearly working days by 31.
The agreement reached with Lamborghini is part of a broader renegotiation of the framework contract used for workers of the carmaker, a subsidiary of Germany’s Volkswagen, which includes 500 new jobs, an increase of annual wages and further labour benefits. The deal includes a 50% increase in the current variable bonuses paid to workers as well as a one-off bonus of more than €1,000 to be paid in December.
Last week, eyewear maker Essilorluxottica agreed with labour unions to test a four-day working week model in its Italian plants, for 20 weeks per year.
Other Italian groups, including aerospace and defence group Leonardo, are in talks with unions to extend flexible working benefits to their production sites.
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