clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Volkswagen turns off BlackBerry email for employees after work hours

New, 21 comments

Volkswagen has agreed to stop delivering emails to company BlackBerrys after work hours for its union employees. The change will not affect the rest of the phone's functions, and will not apply to senior management.

BlackBerry Torch 9850 hands-on
BlackBerry Torch 9850 hands-on

Many employees of Volkswagen in Germany will now be able to relax a little more in their off-hours. The company has made an agreement with its trade union to stop routing emails to company BlackBerrys half an hour after a worker's shift ends, and to start again half an hour before the next workday begins. All other features of the phone will still work, and senior management will keep receiving email round the clock. The head of the VW workers' council has said that the change was received "very positively."

Volkswagen's decision echoes Atos CEO Thierry Breton's move to ban internal email at his company, but is aimed more at reducing burnout than increasing efficiency. Around 1,150 VW employees have the company-provided smartphones, and a spokesperson has said that VW understands the need to balance professional availability with protection of workers' private lives.