In all the countries covered by this study, negotiations are partly underway on variable wages, see Table 6. It is clear that more traditional forms of variable compensation are more often governed by collective agreements than more recent forms, which is not surprising. However, few figures are available on the number of relevant agreements or on the number of workers covered by these agreements. To what extent is variable pay covered by collective bargaining? In other words, who opts for the introduction, modification or elimination of variable compensation systems and who decides how to apply those systems? There are a number of possibilities ranging from the inconsistency to the influence of workers and/or their representatives to common decision-making powers, ranging from a strictly individualized process to various forms of collective bargaining. The following parts? either alone or in a suit? may be involved in the decision-making process: management; Individual staff; Works councils Unions; and, in the case of shares and stock options, the general meeting of shareholders. Variable salary is not included in an employee`s annual earnings, although the amount may be based on the employee`s salary. For example, if the company meets its performance target, a variable pay plan may require an employee to receive 5.25 per cent of their annual salary. Variable wages do not increase employees` wages by 5.25 per cent, as this is not a pay increase. For employers who wish to maintain the level of wages, this is clearly an advantage of variable compensation plans. On the other hand, salary that does not increase wages does not improve the value of the job by increasing pay.
The Irish and Italian trade unions, on the one hand, and the Belgian and French trade unions, on the other, have the greatest contrast in attitudes towards variable remuneration. Variable wages are seen as a way for employees to participate in favourable business outcomes, with Irish unions seeing variable wages as a way to increase workers` “participation” in modern enterprises. On the other hand, they believe that workers should not bear the burden of enterprise risk by variable wages. The lawyers for Latham-Watkins, Jane Ng in Hong Kong, and Yoko Takagi and Javier Garcia Cueto in Spain share the following comments on the legal provisions relating to bonuses in their legal systems: the Salaried Employees Act 1964 contains a specific provision on variable wage elements in the event of an employee`s dismissal. Article 17 bis of the law provides that some governments have expanded or replaced a policy of wage moderation with a broader vision of a “stakeholder society”, as the German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder puts it. Such an attitude is supported by the ruling British Labour Party. For Chancellor Schroeder, this society of interest groups is at the heart of a comprehensive strategy to modernise the Social Democrats. The coalition government of the SPD and Alliance 90/ The Greens sees “improving worker participation in productive capital” as one of its main policy objectives. According to Chancellor Schroeder, the extension of workers` participation had various advantages: a more equitable distribution of assets; an additional form of worker participation; Increase worker participation and participation in the work process and a new pillar of financial security for older people. In March 2000, he called on the social partners, under the current Tripartite Employment Alliance (DE9812286N), to develop new provisions based on sectoral collective agreements to increase workers` participation in the success of their employers.
The government will consider the possible recommendations of the social partners in deciding possible legislation for variable pay (currently, these measures are still quite limited).