Introduction In 2016 representatives from different state organisations working with OSH in the Nordic countries joined up to identify challenges in work and work life – today and tomorrow. The principal aim after that was to formulate ideas on how to tackle these challenges – and present recommendations to the national labour inspectorates based on this. The report is entitled Diversity of the future workforce and work tasks – challenges to OSH.
Results Pace of change within the work market in the Nordic countries is fast, it brings a high degree of complexity, and the identified challenges begs the attention of the labour inspections to prepare in advance. The report states that there is a need to look more closely on (amongst others): the changing nature of work and its location – safety management, the increasing sick leaves, level of work ability and occupational diseases, and
Discussion We are moving more and more towards an on demand economy, and the global supply chains disrupts and enhances national challenges. Newness require from the employees more diverse and constantly shifting qualifications and continuous updating and upgrading of skills. A higher level of own initiative and (self) management is needed – and to some extent there has been a transferring of risk assessment to the employee. The digitalisation and globalisation provides access to a broader labour force market, which bring more intense competition, and on-going automatization and robotics puts even more pressure on the work force to adapt. Even more, there is a blurring of the role and duties in-between the employer and employees – and the physical work place is disappearing more and more.
Regulatory authorities need therefore to devise new methodologies and regimes for OSH regulation, with a holistic approach, and in close collaboration with all interested parties. It is by working together that we can really make a difference for all workers and in fact society as a whole.
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