What Are the Benefits of Flexible Working?
25 May 2022
The way we work has changed. During the pandemic, many employees and employers discovered the valuable benefits of more flexible workstyles and workspaces. Continuously advancing technologies have made at-home work and flexible work possible, and the pandemic highlighted a desire for a more personalized, flexible style of employment. Employees want to work from home now more than ever, desiring the ability to better balance work and life.
But it’s been a couple of years since the pandemic began, and employers and workers are still trying to figure out what their new normal is and how the future of their workforce looks. Some companies have been pushing for a full return to in-office, but many are opting to embrace remote work, allowing a more flexible working style for part-time and/or full-time employees.
As employers and employees figure out what a new normal is for them, understanding the new workplace styles is more important than ever.
Are Flexible Working and Working from Home the Same Thing?
Yes and no. Flexible working and working from home may or may not be the same thing. It depends on the employer and how they define different workstyles. While working from home is straightforward for any employer (you’re working directly from somewhere in your physical home all the time), flexible working can mean any of the following.
Potential meanings of flexible working
- Working completely remote, either at home, or anywhere where you can successfully do your job without distractions to yourself or your colleagues
- Working some of the time at-home and some of the time in the office with the choice being up to you
- Working a set number of days in the office and a set number of days at home or elsewhere
As you can see, flexible working can mean a variety of different things. What they all have in common is a present level of flexibility that doesn’t exist in the traditional five-days-in-the-office workstyle.
Are There More Benefits to Flexible Working?
Flexible working has brought about several benefits for both employers and employees. Among the benefits to flexible working are increased employee productivity, attracting top talent and feeling more balanced.
See below for 11 benefits flexible working can provide:
- Attract top talent
- Make employees more productive
- Less time wasted on commuting (less money for employees as well on transportation costs)
- More time to work during the hours employees are most product (about 1.4 days per month more)
- Less time distracted
- Reduce employee turnover and increased employee loyalty
- Increased employee engagement
- Better work-life balance
- Greater sense of personal freedom, time, and responsibility
- Removal of geolocation restraints
- Lifestyle flexibility
Why is Providing for Flexible Working Important?
Flexibility is the new normal, and employees aren’t inclined to go back. In fact, according to one study, nearly 40 percent of global candidates report workplace flexibility as a top employment consideration.
The increased desire for a more flexible working style has also prompted many workers to rethink their careers. Some are moving across the country, finally able to live where they have wanted without feeling trapped by their office. Some are rethinking their careers altogether, switching to different roles or industries.
And with most people wanting a flexible work life, it’s important now for employers around the world to ensure they can meet these changes. Beyond offering the opportunity to work remote (part-time or full-time), employers can help provide a flexible workplace by leveraging adaptable workspaces. This means providing a variety of workspaces for employees and visitors that may change based on their needs. Hot desks for single days in the office, conference rooms for larger gatherings or creative breakout spaces for brainstorming, a mix of workspaces helps deliver flexibility daily.