If you’re going to attract the best talent, you’ve got to monitor and meet the evolving needs of the workforce. That’s no easy task, though, given that the appetites and expectations of today’s workforce are changing rapidly.
Of all the perks you can offer – such as a diverse workplace and professional training – workplace flexibility has cemented itself as the most desirable among today’s workforce.
An Ernst & Young global survey discovered that more flexibility was the most crucial perk for 9,700 young respondents. Likewise, a 2018 Deloitte survey of 10,000 respondents revealed that a lack of workplace flexibility is the main reason millennials quit their job.
Let’s take a closer look at flexible working to help you develop your approach.
In this post, we’ll cover:
- What flexible working means,
- Why the demand for workplace flexibility is rising, and
- Why you should consider offering it.
What Is Flexible Working?
Flexible working is a way of working that suits an employee’s needs.
With flexible working in place, employees can choose things like their schedule and whether or not they would like to work for home. Those employees use that additional flexibility and autonomy to enjoy a better work-life balance.
Many governments around the world are in the process of adjusting their labour laws and regulations to accommodate flexible working. In the UK, for instance, employees have a legal right to request flexible working from their employers.
Upon receiving that request, employers should handle it in a “reasonable manner”. This means that they should assess the viability of the application, organise a meeting with the employee and also offer an appeal process.
Why the Demand for Flexible Work is Rising
Today’s world is hectic and fast-paced. The pervasive reach of the internet also means that workers often have 24/7 connectivity to their workplace.
This new reality means that a healthy work-life balance has been disrupted. According to statistics from RescueTime, 26% of work is done outside of regular working hours. Meanwhile, another survey found that 33% of salaried workers in the US have to work on the weekend.
This dynamic isn’t sustainable, of course. The constant pressure can cause employees to develop a number of issues, including:
- General unhappiness
- Heart disease
- High blood pressure
This is why a number of workers around the world are turning to flexible work to restore a viable work-life balance.
Why Offer Flexible Working
Some employers find that they are nervous about offering flexible working to their employees. That’s not necessary, though, given that employers can also benefit from offering flexible working.
Here are the main benefits of flexible working for employers:
- Reduce the risk of burnout
Burnout is caused by periods of prolonged stress and its characterised by emotional, physical and mental exhaustion. Burnout is on the rise in modern workplaces, given its hectic nature.
The human cost of burnout is awful, of course, and it can also eat into the profits of businesses. Employees with burnout lead to higher staff turnover rates, lost revenue, and the potential for expensive errors.
Flexible working can help your team members to manage their workload better and strike a more fulfilling work-life balance.
- A more productive workforce
Several studies suggest flexible working can help employees to boost their productivity. A recent report from HSBC discovered that 85% of respondents say flexible working gives them the motivation to improve their productivity, for instance.
If you offer flexible working options to your team members, there’s a good chance that you’ll see their productivity improve.
- Boost staff morale
Long hours and a lack of autonomy can cause your employees to feel undervalued and frustrated. Flexible working can help your employees to feel happier and more in control, though, which can boost their morale.
Higher morale can unlock several benefits for your business. You’ll find that your employees will elevate their productivity, produce better work and improve their attendance, for instance.
- Boost your employer brand
It’s more complicated than ever before for businesses to find the right talent. Not only is that talent scarce, but there’s also fierce competition between companies to secure the best candidates.
The more perks that you can offer, the easier you’ll find it to beat the competition to the best talent. Flexible working has been highlighted as important to today’s candidates: offer it and you’ll be sure to attract the best.
Leverage Your Employer Brand with Elevate
With your employer brand in check, you’ll be able to find the best candidates. Learn more about Elevate and how our platform can provide you with immediate visibility to the talent you need.