Most employees now have the right to ask an employer for flexible working. However, making it possible for staff to have a more flexible working life isn’t just about ensuring legal compliance. There are also many benefits for the business in engaging with a flexible working programme that go above and beyond ticking boxes.
The benefits of flexible working for employers
When it comes to staff performance and engagement, there are lots of different factors that have a role to play in how well a team does and whether it flourishes on a daily basis. For example, investing in training and incentive schemes can help staff to feel valued and regular appraisals and feedback give employees quality standards to work to. Equally important is providing the opportunity for employees to have some control over how work-life balance is structured – and that’s where flexible working comes in. If you’re looking at a flexible working programme for your team then there are a number of benefits in doing so, including:
- Staff are happier when work allows the flexibility to cope with life’s responsibilities, such as parenting or caring for a relative.
- Flexible working reduces wasted time spent on a commute and means your team can start the day without a stressful hour spent in a traffic jam.
- You’re enabling your team to work at the times when they are at their most productive – for some people that’s early morning and for others it’s afternoon.
- Flexible working helps to attract top talent to your business, as those who are the most in demand are looking for the best terms.
- Absenteeism and lateness are both reduced with a flexible working programme, as staff are happier and able to better manage their lives.
- Normal working hours don’t have to be so strictly adhered to.
- Staff turnover is reduced because your employees are happy where they are.
Top tips for a flexible working programme
- Flexible working should be structured. Ensure you still agree a timetable of deadlines and meetings so that your team still has goals to work towards.
- Set manageable targets. It’s especially important that anyone who is working flexibly knows exactly what is expected of them even if they aren’t in the same office space.
- Communication needs to be regular. It’s key to ensure that employees working flexibly are kept in the loop with the rest of the team – and that they are regularly checking in and providing progress reports and updates.
- Flexible workers should still be available. If working from home, it’s important that staff understand they still need to be contactable and answering emails during working hours.
- Technology can do a lot to enable effective flexible working. You can use software and systems to create a virtual office environment, to stay on top of deadlines and communication.
- Team building is especially important when people are working flexibly. Make sure you have regular meet ups and face-to-face meetings so that everyone feels like part of the team.
We can help you to improve the impact that your team has collectively – contact the Inside Out Image team today on 020 7989 4999 to find out more.