The lifestyle changes and challenges that COVID 19 offered society in the past months were at the centre of an online event titled ‘The Digital Future: Teleworking and Online Services’. The webinar, which was held on Friday morning, brought together The Malta Chamber President Perit David Xuereb, MEP Miriam Dalli, Ing. Abigail Cutajar, and Mr. Konrad Pule, as main speakers on the subject. They were joined by several experts from various fields throughout the event.
“The extended use of teleworking tools and online services the world had to resort to during COVID are the perfect example of solutions we must strive to build on” said Perit David Xuereb, “The lessons we have learnt during 2020 must become the spring board from which we launch a new normality that is based on equity, sustainability and resilience” Perit Xuereb noted. “I m pleased to note that this event has brought together a strong list of contributors who have a great deal to share on their areas of expertise. We want to bring more collaborators on board to turn the talk into the walk, and create a national drive where we turn this into an opportunity for society. Let us ensure teleworking stays with us in a safe tangible manner for everyone in a bid to improve our quality of life” Perit Xuereb concluded.
Addressing attendees, MEP Miriam Dalli said “Teleworking works! The COVID19 pandemic has shocked our systems but we believe that it can be turned into an opportunity which works in everyone’s favour. Teleworking is a working method by which workers are granted greater flexibility, allowing companies to reduce operational costs. We cannot all telework, but we have all realised what a better life we live with less cars on our roads and less pollution. However, we need KPIs to measure the performance of employees and to have the right safeguards in place not to burn out workers. Above all, teleworking allows parents to find the right balance between work and family life - a balance which is not easy to find.
LEED Accredited Professional in Building Design and Construction Ing. Abigail Cutajar said 'Teleworking and online services have proved to be effective measures in the quest of creating a Sustainable society. Shifting to digitalisation requires a shift in corporate culture and a change in policy. Such measures should help us kick-start high-impact actions and ambitious goals to confront this climate crisis. My vision is for Malta to become a Sustainable island. This is only possible if every citizen sees value in this shift and joins forces at making Malta the Sustainable Island it deserves to be.'
The Chairperson of the Committee for Mobility within The Malta Chamber Mr Konrad Pule’ said “Teleworking has a wider dimension than just working from home or outside the office. It is an opportunity for businesses, policy makers and people in general to do their part to reduce the amount of vehicles on our road to create more space for cleaner and sustainable modes of transport to become more attractive.”
Minister Carmelo Abela remarked that telework and remote working are important steps forward towards better family friendly conditions of employment. He said that with the evolution of information technology, certain work, can now be carried out away from the office on a regular basis. “It’s good to keep the momentum of this discussion, which is also being discussed at MCESD, so we will be in a position to regulate in the interest of employees and employers, since this has to be a win, win situation”, said Hon. Abela.
This webinar, which was attended by over 120 guests throughout, was the first in a series of events and initiatives being organised by influential stakeholders in the industry. The event featured the participation of Perit David Xuereb, President The Malta chamber, MEP Miriam Dalli, Ing. Abigail Cutajar, LEED Accredited Professional in Building Design and Construction, and Mr. Konrad Pule', Chair - Mobility Committee, The Malta Chamber.
During the online event, the lifestyle changes brought by the COVID-19 partial lockdown were discussed, along with new opportunities that allowed employees to telework from home instead of commuting to the office. The aim of the webinar was to better understand the opportunities for the introduction of further policies that can be introduced to aid the advancement of businesses and to support the long-term benefits that such changes can bring.