Flex-time urged for clerical officials

General government clerical officials should have a flex-time system, according to an annual report submitted May 30 by the National Personnel Authority to the Diet and Cabinet. The flex-time system is currently limited to government officials in research posts.

Of 106 government research bodies eligible for flex time, 83 were implementing such a system, according to a 1994 NPA survey. More than half of the organizations responding to the survey said research efficiency and progress have improved as a result of flex time. The report proposes expanding the system to general clerical officials who sometimes must work late into the night, such as workers at the Diet or those who must contact officials abroad late at night.

The report also proposes allowing government officials who need to care for their children or invalids to also be granted flex time.

The authority proposed a work-hour system under which research officials are considered to have put in regular work hours even if they did not do so, but instead made certain accomplishments. This system is to start this year for research officials invited from abroad for specific periods. The authority wants the system expanded to cover general research personnel as well.