On the 28th and 29th of November 2023, EFSI held the second edition of the Domestic and Home Care European Forum in Paris which gathered more than 65 personal and household services stakeholders from 14 different countries. The first panel focused on the state of the domestic and home care industry, with experts discussing the role of private actors among the different market players and the main issue for investors and operators willing to enter new markets or deploy new services. More specifically, DOMINA emphasised that the shift in the Italian landscape would entail the extension of social fiscal benefits as well as the redesigning of migration paths to ensure a smoother integration of third-country nationals into the labour market. Another issue, on which the co-founder of Batmaid, Andreas Schollin-Borg agreed, is the need for a comprehensive strategy to tackle the undeclared market.
The second panel shed light on the added value of partnerships with other sectors. There is a massive opportunity for domestic and home care services providers to work with many partners, leading them to develop new service offers. In particular, that includes hospitals, insurance companies, healthtech companies, and the whole range of Silver Economy actors. Overall, the panelists agreed that an integrated community is key and that to achieve this a shift in narrative from a linear economy to a more collaborative way of work and a valuation of prevention is necessary. The last round of discussion dealt with the strategies to adopt to tackle skills shortages, as well as recruit and retain workers. In light of the findings of the OECD Study ‘Beyond Applause’, shared by an OECD representative, the speakers agreed that wage increases are not sufficient as they need to be complemented by a recognition of care work by the government as well as by innovative internal management strategies and workers’ engagement tools. In addition to the three panel discussions, this year’s Forum also featured insights from investors and PHS start-ups pitches, as well as two networking sessions and a guided tour of the French tradeshow of domestic and home care services (Salon des services à la personne et de l’emploi à domicile).