Google could break labor laws by paying temporary workers
But last year, in an email from the company, a Google official said that it appeared that 16 more countries, including Brazil, Canada, Australia and Mexico, had some form of Equal treatment laws for temporary workers that the company had not properly recognized and taken no extra steps to comply with local laws.
As more countries introduce new regulations, Google is forced to take action. In 2019, the Netherlands passed a law that requires Google’s recruitment agencies to provide temporary workers with the same benefits as permanent company employees, such as sick pay, maternity leave and other paid leave. , health care and scholarships. The change affected at least seven temporary Google workers across the country.
“This is a situation that we must avoid,” Barry, Google’s compliance officer, wrote in an email to his colleagues. It recommended that Google fire the seven workers before the law comes into force in 2020. Ultimately, Google said it decided to hire six of the temporary workers in full-time positions for the remainder of their time. contract. The other worker was fired but with three months’ salary, according to the company.
In recent years, Google has looked for ways to reduce its use of temporary workers. In 2018, he launched Project Brightlight, an initiative that included a review to see if jobs were properly categorized as part of the ‘Work Model Reset’.
In an internal 2021 email, a Google executive said the company had reduced the number of temps by 2,700 since 2018. Most of those positions have been outsourced, according to the email, while 750 temporary workers were converted to full-time employees.
The project also aimed to establish pay equity for temporary workers with permanent employees in similar jobs in the United States by 2019.
In a 2019 preliminary study to assess the financial impact of the measure in the United States, where Google employs more than half of its temporary workers, the company estimated it would cost up to $ 52 million. to pay more than 4,000 temporary workers. up to the minimum wage of a newly hired permanent employee.