The Korea Herald


Government may disclose info related to work-life balance at local firms

By Yoon Min-sik

Published : June 9, 2024 - 15:05

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The South Korean government said Sunday it has hired experts to conduct research on adopting a new system in which local companies submit detailed information about their benefits related to workers' well-being.

According to the Ministry of Employment and Labor, the system would have firms disclose the state of the various systems they have to allow their workers a better life, such as maternity leave, parental leave, shortened working hours for parents, telecommunicating and flexible working hours.

Various branches of the government give certifications to companies for being "family-friendly" or "work-life balanced," but there is no way for a job seeker to know exactly what kind of benefits a company provides for workers. The only way as of now is to scroll through anonymous posts on online job-seeking platforms, which require users to verify themselves as former or current workers in order to post such information.

"We are still mulling whether to adopt the system. The details, such as if and when to pursue the new system, will be decided based on the results of the study," a ministry official said. Whether or not the information disclosure will be mandatory or award-based is also being discussed by the ministry.

Local surveys have shown that a growing number of workers here, particularly younger ones, are placing greater importance on work-life balance than before. A survey by Shinhan Bank, conducted with 10,000 people in the working population aged between 20 and 64, in April showed that 26 percent of respondents aged 20-28 and 25.2 percent of those aged 29-43 said work-life balance is their priority when looking for a job.

Work-life balance was the second-highest priority for both age groups behind salary, picked by 48.3 percent of the 20-28 group and 48.9 percent of the 29-43 group.

A 2022 survey by job search website Saramin of 1,828 adult job seekers showed that 71.8 percent of respondents prefer an employer that prioritizes "good work-life balance," even if the salary may be lower.