For Written Answer on : 05/04/2022
Question Number(s): 155 Question Reference(s): 18163/22
Department: Enterprise, Trade and Employment
Asked by: David Stanton T.D.
To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise; Trade and Employment the current policy with respect to remote working options for staff in his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
Since the start of the pandemic, my Department has made significant efforts to facilitate remote working for staff, and to invest in assisting staff to work safely and productively from home. Building on the National Remote Work Strategy launched in January 2021, my Department fully supports the move to a blended working environment. In finalising our longer-term policy, and transitioning to it, my Department will be informed by the Civil Service Blended Working Policy Framework published on 31 March 2021. This will inform the development of the Blended Working policy for my Department, which will be finalised and issued within the coming weeks.
In this context, my Department will build upon the learnings from our successful experience of remote and blended working in the past two years. We developed a ConnEcTEd Teams Action Plan ConnEcTEd Teams Action Plan – DETE (enterprise.gov.ie) during this period and it supports our teams in a blended working environment.
The ‘ConnEcTEd Teams’ programme established behaviours that support effective remote/ blended working for teams. The programme targets five key areas:
- Maintaining team/ organisation-wide connectedness and trust;
- Ensuring effective and efficient information flows;
- Enabling continued on-the-job training and coaching activities;
- Facilitating remote collaboration and innovation; and
- Supporting employee wellbeing.
Our remote working options will evolve over time as we pilot blended working options including working from home two or three days per week while ensuring business needs are met. We will continue to survey staff and to work with our leaders, staff and unions to implement the optimum blended working policy that best serves my Departments delivery for the citizen.