The stipulations on working hours set fort in the Working Hours Act are too rigid, estimates Harri Hietala, a co-operation ombudsman at the Ministry of Employment and the Economy. Hietala proposes that the flex-period be lengthened from 3 to 4 hours and that the maximum accumulation of working hours exceeding or falling short of weekly working hours be raised from 40 to 60 hours. Weekly working hours would therefore be capped at 48 hours instead of the current 45 hours.
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Local bargaining to increase
The Working Hours Act should also allow for the introduction of working-time accounts, Hietala believes. Relaxing the regulations on working hours is one element of local bargaining that can benefit both employers and employees.