How Important is Workplace Flexibility?

Published May 10, 2018

It’s time you reset your views on workplace norms and try a new perspective. Technological advances have been changing the business scene drastically over the past few decades and now transformation reaches into office setups too.

If you’re looking for ways to save money the flexibility you allow your workers may be the source you’ve overlooked.

What Does Workplace Flexibility Refer to?

The term flexibility may spark some apprehension in you. Don’t worry. This isn’t about giving in to every whim your employees may have. But it is about:

  • Restructuring work hours
  • Allowing employees to work elsewhere than on site or in the office
  • Helping employees find balance between work and home life
  • Allowing job sharing between employees

A typical example is helping an employee who is relocating for a spouse’s new job. You can allow him or her to work remotely—possibly in a different time zone—so they don’t have to switch jobs. Or perhaps someone will be more productive when he or she doesn’t have to waste hours in traffic arriving at work exhausted every morning.

Why It’s Vital To Your Business Success

Become the #1 Option for the Best Employees

Keep the Ones You Have

How did one company save $41 Million? It figured out how to curb employee turnover costs. You know how much you spend each time someone leaves the company. You need to advertise the position, use time to interview applicants and then you invest funds in training the new guy.

It would have been better to keep the original one, right? So why force someone to leave the company if flexibility will make him or her stay?

Deloitte & Touche faced this dilemma and took the huge step of implementing flexible work arrangements. People who would have lost their jobs because they moved or had personal challenges retained positions & this saved the company millions.

Here’s the next benefit: This change resulted in over 70% of the workforce experiencing higher productivity simply because their hours or work locations changed. Can you see the benefits for all involved?

Attract the Best Ones Out There

Do you know how many businesses already have more flexible guidelines than before? If your competitors are doing this and you’re not they’re the preferred employers at the moment. You need to employ the best ones that will help you grow your business but you could miss out on getting them if your terms aren’t appealing.

Take this one step further and realize that your best candidate may be on the other side of the globe. Why can’t he or she apply for the position if the work doesn’t require them to be in the office?

Sticking to unnecessary habits—such as demanding to see all your employees in person every day—can keep your business from performing at its best. So open yourself up to a larger talent pool and you may stumble upon the new talent you simply can’t find in your home town.

Increase Employee Engagement & Your Productivity

When you initiate more flexibility it automatically communicates a few things to your team:

  • You trust them
  • Your respect their time
  • You understand they’re unique with specific needs

When people experience this from management’s side they feel more connected which leads to more engagement. Employee engagement is the key to higher productivity because:

  • Employees will work more hours if necessary
  • They feel motivated which gets work done faster
  • They value the company so they won’t waste time and resources
  • When engaged it’s easy to stay positive and motivate others to do the same

An important reason why workplace flexibility works is because people don’t feel they’re simply chasing deadlines set by bosses anymore. When timelines allow for personal preferences people feel happier while they work which automatically results in higher productivity.

Your Employees Must Impress Customers

Customer service seems unrelated right? But it’s not. It actually proves how intertwined different aspects of a business can be.

Giving your employees a more flexible environment can transform how they attend to your customers:

  • When employees can access information wherever they are they can use it to assist clients no matter the circumstances and even after hours
  • More engaged workers are happier, focused and motivated to give clients a positive experience
  • To keep such favorable working conditions workers’ decisions will be motivated by an urge to benefit the company such as optimizing each engagement with a client

Can you see the ripple effect one change in your management style will have?

Be Active 24/7

If an employee no longer has to keep to a 9-to-5 schedule and if work information is accessible off site too your company starts functioning around the clock. Someone working remotely always has his or her work with them. They can tend to matters 24/7 or work on it when they’re suddenly inspired by a new idea.

Guidelines to Get Your Started

Of course this is a daunting change to even contemplate especially if you’ve never tried this. Even though you probably have excellent employees the loss of control will affect your business.

So let’s help you get it right from the start with these tips:

  • No you can’t be flexible with everyone in the same way. Only individuals showcasing high work ethic and who don’t need constant guidance will perform optimally in a flexible work setup.
  • Determine how you’ll measure productivity before a new arrangement starts. This will prevent misunderstandings. Employees may have the luxury to attend to personal matters during normal work days, but they must understand they’ll need to make up for those lost minutes or hours at some stage. Getting time and attendance software from Advance Systems Inc is therefore a valuable investment to enhance workplace flexibility.
  • Consider what information will leave the office if the person works remotely. Put security measures—such as a secure cloud server—in place if necessary.
  • Ask about remote office setups to determine if there will be high productivity levels. If someone wants to work in their lounge where other people will distract them it may not improve productivity after all.
  • Agree on a method through which all relevant parties will regularly communicate. This is about managing relationships—very important in today’s business market—and keeping each other updated about work. And don’t simply email each other a few notes. You need interaction and luckily you live in a technologically advanced age where video conferencing is just a click away.

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One Response
  1. Michael J. Madrid 2 months ago