BBVA Spain puts cap on working hours to encourage employee wellbeing

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Spanish banking group BBVA has implemented a number of new work-life policies, including telling all of its employees in Spain to disconnect from work devices and avoid answering emails between the hours of 7pm and 8am, whenever possible. 

The Work Better. Enjoy Life programme, which came into effect on 18 November 2019, is part of the organisation’s aim to help employees achieve a harmonious and productive work-life balance.

As well as encouraging disconnection from digital devices, corporate offices in Spain will no longer be open after 7pm. There will also be a 45 minute cap on meetings in a bid to increase productivity. It is recommended that presentations are kept to a bare minimum and video conferencing is being openly encouraged.

BBVA is also advocating sustainability and convenience, with more frequent bus services to the town centre for staff, as well as encouraging eco-friendly modes of transport, including electric scooters and car sharing. 

The organisation’s new objectives are aimed at promoting a more flexible and balanced work environment that avoids encouraging presenteeism.

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Employees were briefed about the new policies via presentation and were also sent a follow-up guide explaining the new measures and the new services available at the organisation’s different corporate headquarters. BBVA stated that this new approach is part of an ongoing plan, rather than being an isolated event, and that it will be adding new initiatives whenever there is a need for them. 

Carlos Casas, global head of talent and culture at Madrid’s Ciudad BBVA, who hosted the presentation, said: “We want to reinforce key principles in our organisation: working toward goals, being more productive and efficient, and offering employees greater flexibility and balance in their professional and personal lives.”