On July 6, 2023, a successful webinar was held between the French company Cegid, a leading global provider of business management software, and Fiscalia.com, the Fiscal Information Center of Leal Benavides y Cia.
The topic addressed was the Workweek Reduction Initiative, which was watched online by more than 500 attendees, and was conducted by Alberto Quintana Noda, from Colombia, with the participation of Nancy Raya Sosa, from Spain, both from Cegid, and, on behalf of Fiscalia, Gustavo Leal Cueva, from Mexico, supported by Gerardo Campos, also from Fiscalia.
Productivity in Mexico
According to Campos, Mexico ranks first among OECD members in terms of hours worked, with a total of 2,137 hours per year, but unfortunately this does not translate into higher productivity. "So, in Mexico people work a lot, but there is no direct relationship with productivity," Leal Cueva referred.
Objective of the initiative
The initiative seeks to reduce the working week by establishing one more mandatory rest day per week, for a total of two.
The reduction of the working week could translate into a reduction in payroll costs and an improvement in the working environment. This, of course, assuming that productivity is increased by having one more day of rest, "which we will have to see if in practice it is something that can be achieved", commented Leal Cueva.
The incorporation of an additional rest day arises many questions regarding human resource management: Can companies restructure their operations and reassign functions to grant an additional rest day or will they have to pay overtime, rest day compensation or hire more personnel? The way in which companies will cover these productivity hours will have to be analyzed on a case-by-case basis.
Leal Cueva emphasized that the initiative does not consist in reducing the hours from 48 to 40 per week, but in granting one more day of rest, which, even if it finally translates into 40 hours per week, represents a challenge when distributing the working hours in the weekly period as of today. "In short, if a worker works 48 hours in a week, it must be reviewed whether he/she will be paid overtime or the rest day compensation, whatever proceeds," Leal Cueva reiterated.
During this remote seminar, key points covered the management of vacations, rest days compensation, special working days or regimes, shift management, absence factors, and a series of additional elements that companies must begin to evaluate, even though the legislative process of the initiative is paused, to be resumed in the next legislative session, which will take place between September and December 2023.
An interesting aspect of the conference was the comparison made by Campos, on similar legislative efforts in other Latin American countries, such as:
Chile: will gradually reduce working hours from 45 to 40 hours within five years.
Colombia: in the same 5-year period, the working day will be reduced from 47 to 42 hours.
Argentina: It is in the same situation as Mexico, in the sense that the reduction of the working day is being discussed. Eleven different initiatives are being presented in Congress to reduce the working day from 48 to 40 or 36 hours per week.
Nancy Raya was in charge of discussing information technology requirements to manage these changes, highlighting the benefits of Cegid's products for payroll and human resources management, which is already prepared to handle these changes in a practical and simple way.
Cegid and Fiscalia
Cegid is a French company that is strongly increasing its presence in Mexico and, in general, in Latin America. Cegid and Fiscalia have a long-standing working relationship.
The content of the webinar will be available in the coming days for general consultation. Leal Benavides y Cía. will be informing you in due time.