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  • 2018 Corporate Responsibility Report

Flexible working models for a wide range of needs

We offer our employees a large number of optional work and collaboration models that are tailored to different needs. This also addresses growing requirements for greater flexibility as a result of the digital transformation.

Promoting part-time work
Working based on various part-time models is a concept that is established throughout the Group:

  • Our employees can join a part-time model directly or switch from full-time to part-time work. That also applies to managerial positions.
  • Since 2014, our employees have had the right to return to their original weekly working hours at any time. As a result, we offer our employees more flexibility than prescribed by the German government’s new law on “bridging part-time employment.”

In Germany, 12.9 percent of employees under collective agreements and 15.2 percent of civil servants took advantage of part-time models (as at December 31, 2018). In addition, a total of 29 executives throughout Germany were working part-time (as at December 31, 2018). You can find detailed information on our numerous part-time options here.

Mobile working
Mobile working is the normal state of affairs at Deutsche Telekom. In 2017, Deutsche Telekom and ver.di agreed on the first collective agreement on mobile working concluded by an employer association, which includes rules regarding telecommuting and mobile working, among others. Thanks to increased geographic flexibility, our employees have more freedom to plan their work. We also enable them to achieve a better work-life balance.

Lifetime work accounts
Since 2016 we have offered about 74,700 employees in Germany what are termed lifetime work accounts. The around 12,600 civil servants in Germany have had this option available to them since mid-2017, which allows them to finance a future leave of absence lasting more than one month. The account may be used for early retirement, a sabbatical or to support a period of part-time work. Our employees can finance their lifetime work account either from their gross salary or with time credits converted into monetary amounts. Until 2020 we will also assist employees who are below a certain income limit with an annual contribution. We have already set up 10,430 accounts for employees and 664 accounts for civil servants (as at December 31, 2018).

The 80/20 model
Since 2017, we have been using the 80/20 model to give our employees the opportunity to spend up to 20 percent of their working time on projects outside of their usual remit. This allows them to work with teams from other departments. In this way, we break up departmental silos and can make better use of the company’s broad spectrum of talent. The model makes employees more visible and motivated, and enhances their network of contacts. Use of the model is voluntary and is tied to a specific Group project.

Phased retirement
We offer all Group employees over the age of 54 the option of phased retirement. Separate regulations apply to employees and to civil servants. There are two options for phased retirement: the block model and the part-time model. Unlike regular part-time regulations, we make a substantial top-up payment to the employees’ part-time pay with our phased retirement offer. This means that reducing their weekly hours does not equate to a proportionately high reduction in net pay for employees. During the reporting year, a total of 1,429 phased retirement contracts were concluded with employees both covered and not covered by collective agreements. Among civil servants there were 410 such contracts.

Underlying regulations
These are based on the laws and regulations applicable in the individual countries. Working hours at Deutsche Telekom in Germany are governed by collective agreements and works agreements. Daily working hours are electronically recorded for employees who are covered by collective agreements. This guarantees compliance with legal and company regulations; for example, it makes sure that the weekly working hours for a specific flexitime balancing period are complied with. At a large corporation like Deutsche Telekom, regulations are diverse and cannot be fully specified for all the Group companies.