SEOUL, July 6 (Korea Bizwire) — POSCO has introduced South Korea’s first ‘work-from-home policy for childcare without career interruption’ this month, raising the likelihood of a transformation in work culture across South Korean businesses.
The steelmaker began receiving registrations for the work-from-home program from all employees with childcare needs.
The program allows any employee with a child younger than 8 years of age or under second grade at elementary school to work four to eight hours from home each day.
Participants are still entitled to salary equivalent to those coming to the office for work, and are not discriminated against in terms of welfare benefits or promotion.
All employees with a single child can work from home for up to four years. Those with two children are allowed up to six years.
“A half-day work-from-home policy, in which employees can work while the children are away at school, is gaining popularity,” said a company employee.
“We are getting many calls asking about the program’s salary changes, registration procedures, and schedules.”
POSCO’s decision to introduce the new program was prompted by the coronavirus pandemic.
After trying out a three-day work-from-home, three-day work-from-office policy in the two months after the onset of the coronavirus outbreak, POSCO realized that having employees work from home had little impact on the company’s productivity.
The new program is receiving positive responses from the public. Other businesses are eyeing the effectiveness of POSCO’s new initiative after they also trialed two or three-day work-from-home programs following the coronavirus outbreak.
“It is a bold decision to allow employees to work from home for as long as six years without any wage cuts or disadvantages,” said a company source.
“Companies will be watching POSCO with keen interest as the coronavirus is driving the spread of ‘untact’ working culture.”
H. M. Kang (firstname.lastname@example.org)