Many of us have been employed for many years at a salary that is expressed in dollars per hour, per week, or per month. We work at jobs to and from which we commute through congested traffic spending one or two hours a day just burning gas. We have to be at work “on time”, and stay until the end of a fixed-length business day, required to “deliver” from seven to eight hours a day.
Employers continue to operate with standard schedules and workplace arrangements as if they are fundamental and rational, effectively buying people’s “time”. But in reality we hire people for what they can do for us, not how much time they spend with us. We want their efforts, their creativity and their skills and experience, to get things done. Where and when they do it, may not matter that much, except that if you offer flexibility in these areas, it can make a big difference to them and to you!
Flexible work schedules and work locations are not new concepts, but they are still unavailable to employees in many companies. However the evidence is that their introduction can be a powerful low or no cost attractor and retainer of high talent people, and improve engagement, productivity and the bottom line.
“Flextime” is a well-known term that refers to a number of “flexible work schedule” programs.
“Telework” or “Telecommuting” programs allow people to work somewhere other than in the office, typically by accessing office systems remotely, (usually from home).
The person may work remotely a couple of days a week or on a full time basis. The cost and time savings to the employee can be huge.
Demonstrated benefits of flexible arrangements for employers include;
But a flexible policy needs:
Benefits for employees include;
But employees still need;
Not every job or every employee can be afforded a flexible working arrangement, being at work for a fixed number of hours every day may simply be the nature of the job. Some amount of interaction with supervisors and co-workers is critical in any job, so typically some days or hours of in-office time will always be required. But the potential benefits of flexible work arrangements are substantial, you should really check it out!
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