Work life balance

To balance their working commitments with their family and personal lives, Generali Group employees can take advantage of flexible working hours, part-time roles and company crèches. In some overseas Group companies telecommuting is also a possibility.

In the countries considered by the Sustainability Report, the working week ranges from 37 hours in Italy (administrative staff that adhere to the National Collective Bargaining Agreement for the insurance sector) to 42 hours at Banca Svizzera Italiana. A range of flexible start and finish times and lunch hours are available. Furthermore, in France workers can choose from different options involving variable combinations of working days and holidays.

Shift work is used in Europ Assistance group companies that provide policyholders with a 24/7 service and in some Group call centres that provide assistance until 10:00 p.m.. More specifically, at Europ Assistance employees work shifts of around 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, and/or shifts of no less than 4 hours a day.

Although there are differences from country to country, in accordance with the law, National Collective Bargaining Agreements and supplementary agreements in force at each company, Group employees are entitled to take paid leave for: marriage, the death of a relative, pregnancy, breastfeeding, maternity/paternity leave, children's illnesses/birthdays, medical appointments and tests, study, care for disabled relatives and giving blood.
In line with the company's organisational requirements, workers are usually also granted paid leave, leave with compensatory working time and working-hours bank, which can be taken in hours or fractions of working days, to boost flexibility. More specifically, in the Italian insurance sector, the number of hours of paid leave granted to employees with disabilities and employees with children under three years of age or with serious disabilities is doubled (in the Czech Republic this entitlement continues until the disabled child has reached the age of 26, provided he/she is not being cared for social services), without prejudice to the provisions of the legislation in force with regard to leave for people with disabilities and their careers. The conditions as regards leave for medical appointments and care and study leave are also more favourable than those provided by the laws in force and the sector National Collective Bargaining Agreements. Employees are also entitled to periods of unpaid leave of a maximum of 12 months for justified personal or family reasons.

In the Sustainability Report countries forms of vertical and/or horizontal part-time work have been regulated. The number of working hours is usually reduced by 50%, but smaller or greater reductions are often possible, varying between a maximum of 80% (in France) and a minimum of 20% (in Switzerland) in the area under consideration.
Part-time contracts are generally granted for family reasons, such as the need to provide care for close relatives (parents, children, spouse or other members of the household) who are ill or disabled, to look after children, or in the event of serious personal reasons. In France, workers over 55 years of age are encouraged to request a part-time role in preparation for retirement. A similar contractual provision is in place for older workers in Germany. The granting of a part-time contract always depends on the compatibility of such a request with the company's technical, organisational and production needs. Where it is not possible, employees may however be granted reduced working hours if they are willing to carry out a similar role or be transferred to a different department at the same company site. Employees normally have the option, often guaranteed for a certain number of years, to return to full-time work (reversible part-time work). After this time has elapsed, the company can still decide whether or not to accept requests to return to work on a full-time basis.

As regards the work life balance initiatives, there has been an increase in the number of company crèches and/or infants' schools for the children of employees:

  • in Italy, at the Trieste, Mogliano Veneto and Rome offices, there are company crèches for a total of 110 children of between 3 months and 3 years old;
  • in Germany, at the Cologne and Munich offices employees can use the company crèches for their children of between 6 months and 3 years old; in Munich there is also a nursery school with 72 places for children of 3 to 6 years old. Meanwhile, Europ Assistance has entered into partnerships with local crèches to ensure that the children of its employees are given priority when new places are assigned;
  • in the Czech Republic, since 2013 employees at the Prague office have been able to send their children of between 18 months and 6 years to infant schools;
  • in Switzerland, at the Adliswil and Nyon offices, there are two crèches that can accommodate a total of 69 children.

In 2012, Generali Group Austria was certified as familyfriendly because of its advanced work life balance policies. In Germany, Generali Deutschland Holding AG, Generali Versicherung, Aechen Munchener Versicherung Generali Deutschland Investments and Dialog have been awarded the Audit Beruf und Familie (family-friendly certificate), a quality mark that the not-for-profit Hertie Foundation, with the endorsement of the Federal Ministry of the Economy, awards to companies with outstanding work life balance policies.