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9 Dec 2021

European Commission

EU Commission publishes proposal to improve working conditions of people working through digital labour platforms

"Commission proposals to improve the working conditions of people working through digital labour platforms", 9 December 2021

...the European Commission proposes a set of measures to improve the working conditions in platform work and to support the sustainable growth of digital labour platforms in the EU.

The new rules will ensure that people working through digital labour platforms can enjoy the labour rights and social benefits they are entitled to. They will also receive additional protection as regards the use of algorithmic management (i.e. automated systems that support or replace managerial functions at work). A common set of EU rules will provide increased legal certainty, therefore enabling digital labour platforms to benefit fully from the economic potential of the Single Market and a level playing field...

Directive on improving working conditions in platform work

  • Employment status

The proposed Directive seeks to ensure that people working through digital labour platforms are granted the legal employment status that corresponds to their actual work arrangements...

  • Algorithmic management

The Directive increases transparency in the use of algorithms by digital labour platforms, ensures human monitoring on their respect of working conditions and gives the right to contest automated decisions. These new rights will be granted to both workers and genuine self-employed.  

  • Enforcement, transparency and traceability

National authorities often struggle to access data on platforms and the people working through them. This is even more difficult when platforms operate in several Member States, making it unclear where platform work is performed and by whom.

The Commission's proposal will bring more transparency around platforms by clarifying existing obligations to declare work to national authorities and asking platforms to make key information about their activities and the people who work through them available to national authorities.  

In its Communication on Better Working Conditions for a Stronger Social Europe: harnessing the full benefits of digitalisation for the future of work, the Commission calls on Member States, social partners and all relevant actors to put forward concrete measures to improve working conditions in platform work. Its aim is to harness the benefits of the digital transformation and protect the European social market economy. The EU also wants to lead by example and contribute to future global standards for high-quality platform work. Platforms operate in a cross-border way and warrant a cross-border regulatory approach...

The Commission's proposal for a Directive on improving working conditions in platform work will now be discussed by the European Parliament and the Council...

The draft Directive can be accessed in full here.