Wages and Conditions of Work in Ringkøbing-Skjern

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Room for leisure and family life

The Danes like to work and value being punctual. We take pride in doing our job well, and the working culture in most Danish companies is also based on co-operation and personal responsibility. In many companies the employees are encouraged to contribute with ideas and suggestions for improvements in the working processes, and in many companies it is quite normal to address the manager by his or her first name and approach him or her with suggestions. Even though the atmosphere is casual the companies are, however, very professional, and it is always the boss who makes the vital decisions.

Denmark is renowned for having good, orderly and flexible working conditions leaving room for leisure and family life. This is ascribed to “the Danish model” which is a special collective agreement envied by many countries.

 

"The Danish model"

The main headlines of the model are collective agreements and a high degree of organization. It is first and foremost the employers (employers’ organizations) and the wage earners (trade unions) who themselves in co-operation ensures the regulation of wages and conditions of work. In the collective agreements wages and conditions of work in the individual industries are determined, and there is a reciprocal responsibility to comply with the agreements. At the same time various basic rules have been agreed upon which the parties must comply with in the case of disputes. It works because there is a high degree of organization on the Danish labour market.

Part of ”the Danish Model” is also tripartite negotiations. This means that the state collaborates with the parties on the labour market about any legislation that might be related to conditions on the labour market.

The Danish labour market model is also praised for its ”flexicurity”, which consists of this special mix of flexibility on the labour market combined with social security. This provides the employers with more flexible options when it comes to adapting the number of employees for the tasks, including short-notice layoffs. In return the employees are ensured an income in the case of unemployment, or - if possible - in the case of employment in another job in the same company.

 

Outing in the summer in Ringkøbing-Skjern Kommune - Foto: hvidesande.dk

 

Socializing at the place of work

In most work places there are fixed agreements about lunch breaks and coffee breaks where you get the opportunity to have a little chat with your colleagues. In many places you bring your own packed lunch, while in major companies there may be canteens where food can be bought. If you are a smoker you must take into account that smoking is only allowed outside, or that there is a total ban on smoking during working hours.

Most companies arrange various social events, like for instance a Christmas Lunch, perhaps an outing in the summer, Friday cake etc., where the employees can have a nice time together. Everybody is invited and almost everybody participates in these arrangements which facilitate the sense of community in the company.

Iwona and Jarek

 
Polish family:

Nature and good conditions for the children are crucial

It is first and foremost the good conditions for the children and the clean and beautiful nature that Iwona and Jarek emphasize when expressing why they have chosen to settle in Ringkøbing-Skjern Municipality in Denmark. In the past two years Iwona and Jarek have been living in the village of Finderup together with their joint child Diego and Jarek’s son Manuel and his daughter Karolina.

”The child-care facilities here are simply so good. They do so much for the development of children. For instance, they are allowed to cook and do woodwork when they can handle a knife– even though it may be a little dangerous. Besides, they also spend a lot of time in nature. In all sorts of weather. It is so healthy for them”, says Iwona who is also really happy with the schools.

”However, the best thing is that you exist to live here – which means that you don’t just constantly work, but you work in order to also live in your spare time”, says Iwona, and Jarek agrees. That was the very reason why he came to Denmark to work, since - as a self-employed motor mechanic with his own construction firm - he just worked and worked without earning sufficient to live on. On top of that he did not have any spare time whatsoever.

 

Iwona og Jarek - Read the full story here

 

Charlotte and Ian

 
Danish/English couple:

Wish of living the good life

”Above all, we just wanted to be together and live the good life. We love being together” says the Danish/English couple Charlotte and Ian Coles who have settled down in an idyllic old farm house at Kloster, halfway between the Ringkøbing Fjord and the Stadil Fjord and close to the town of Ringkøbing.

It is not surprising that the couple had a wish of the good life in peaceful surroundings with lots of nature. Ian was a Major in the British Army, which meant the couple had moved around military bases in England and Germany for years. Ian had also been deployed close to the world’s war zones, leaving Charlotte alone and suffering months of deprivation during their first year in Ringkøbing-Skjern Municipality.

They bought the old farmhouse overlooking the Stadil Fjord in 2013, and Charlotte moved in full-time, while Ian could only come home as work allowed. But now the good life has really started as Ian retired this summer.

Ian is 48 years old and he has just landed a job with Vestas - the wind turbine manufacturer – as a Project Training Leader. 

Charlotte and Ian - Read the full story here