We are on a quest for change – a change in the way we think about work in a rapidly changing world. It is time to reimagine the systems we use to support and enable diverse forms of work so that everyone has an equal opportunity to prosper. It’s a quest for a new social contract for the 21st century.
The rise of technology and, in particular, the platform economy – where digital applications connect workers with employers – has further enabled new ways of working and new opportunities. However, it has also highlighted significant gaps in the social contract for work, injecting fresh momentum into calls for a new social framework for all types of work.
Governments, employers and social partners need to redesign society to ensure that all forms of work are secure and sustainable, so that there is adequate social protection for all workers. All stakeholders should work together to facilitate a gradual shift towards the individual, portable and transferable build-up of social accounts.
This report is aimed at driving the debate to devise a new social contract that is fit for purpose in today’s world, with a specific focus on work and security in the age of platforms.
The Adecco Group’s position is clear. Where there is a national system of building up social rights, workers should not lose these as they move between forms of work or economic sectors.
When it comes to platform work, the correct classification of types of work is key. If there is a de facto employment relationship between a platform and a worker, it should be defined and classified as such, and all relevant rights and obligations should apply to both parties.