07 December 2021

With the ongoing pandemic, businesses have adopted telecommuting or work-from-home arrangements for the safety of employees and in compliance with health measures set by authorities. Telecommuting and alternative work arrangements require established terms and conditions in compliance with labor standards, so it is important to understand their legal implications.

The European Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines in partnership with DivinaLaw, recently held the webinar “The Pandemic Pivot: Understanding the Legal Implications of Telecommuting in the COVID-19 Pandemic and Beyond.’’

In the webinar, DivinaLaw Senior Associate Atty. Alwyn Faye Mendoza discussed the important points of Republic Act 11165 or the Telecommuting Act of 2018. She encouraged businesses to adopt telecommuting, citing its benefits. “The Telecommuting Act is consistent with the state policy to affirm labor as a primary social economic force. In the Philippines, we lost a total of P3.5 billion in potential income daily and that is due to traffic. Instead of wasting hours and hours in traffic, a work-from-home employee may now use this time to be productive and accomplish his responsibilities,” Atty. Mendoza said.

DivinaLaw Senior Associate Atty. Krisyl Cancino talked about flexible work arrangements (FWAs) that organizations may adopt, such as flexi-time schedules and compressed workweeks. She noted that with their benefits, FWAs are here to stay even beyond the pandemic. “It is best that we adopt the necessary survey of what particular working conditions or working schemes will best suit and cater to the needs of establishments, taking into account their beneficial interests to employees and establishments,” said Atty. Cancino.

DivinaLaw Partner and Resident Counsel Atty. Mae Elaine Bathan served as the moderator during the open forum.