APSCo Germany celebrates first lobbying win
APSCo Germany, working in close association with an alliance of major recruitment firms including members SThree and Hays (ADESW), is celebrating a major lobbying win just three months after its establishment.
Following conversations between APSCo Germany, ADESW and the British Embassy in Germany, the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (BMAS) has released an updated draft proposal of amendments to the Labour Leasing Act. APSCo Germany says that the document, which was unveiled on 17th February, sees many concerns that it and the ADESW acknowledged, addressed.
The ADESW put forward varied practical proposals which will create a better legal framework for the provision of freelancer services, for example: an income threshold or the Swedish model of quick and easy social security checks.
The organisations claim that the most significant change in the new draft proposals is that the criteria proposed to define and differentiate externally leased and ‘freelance’ staff from ‘internal’ staff with a deemed employed status has been thrown out.
Although the new proposal shows some improvement in the field of Staff Leasing (Arbeitnehmerüberlassungsgesetz – AÜG), it is still weak in certain areas, with potential confusion surrounding the subject of equal pay and a lack of clarity around how limiting temporary staff leasing to 18 months will be enforced, according to APSCo Germany.
Following the publication of the revised plans, the CDU/CSU parliamentary group has temporarily blocked further progress on the consultation. The process is expected to be delayed until later this month.
Tremayne Elson, managing director of APSCo Germany, commented, “Positive revisions in the AÜG reform proposals reflect the new voice that the recruitment profession has found in Germany. Never before have I seen such a unifying of German recruitment firms in the face of such potentially damaging legislation. The ADESW, supported by APSCo Germany, has spearheaded a public awareness and political campaign locally and internationally. These concerns have been taken directly to the seat of German Government. The success of this campaign has already resulted in positive change and continued action is planned to ensure a good outcome for the German economy, flexible working and the recruitment profession.
“This would not have just been bad for recruitment firms, but would have meant real changes to the contracting landscape in Germany and had a significant and far-reaching negative impact on the German economy. Since APSCo Germany’s launch in 2015 we have been actively helping to increase awareness of these changes and hope that the Grand Coalition in Germany consults with us in future to avoid a repeat of the very public power struggle between the two major political groups in Berlin.”
Carlos Frischmuth, head of Hays Berlin and ADESW spokesperson, said, "We succeeded in coordinating a massive action involving targeted billboard in key strategic locations, more than 150,000 emails and letters sent to the German Parliament from the candidate community and an unprecedented social media campaign. This brought our concerns directly to political Berlin and we were now helped by an intervention of the coalition partner CSU stopping the regulation process for various changes.”