Six Major Benefits of Workplace Flexibility in 2023
Tuesday February 7, 2023
As an employer, are you intrigued by the benefits of workplace flexibility? Workplace flexibility is a hot topic in the business world, and for a good reason. It offers a wide range of advantages for both employers and employees. The highest-value employers are embracing this trend progressively as it continues to provide workers with an environment to thrive and be highly efficient.
Flexible working arrangements, such as telecommuting or flexible scheduling, allow employees to balance work and personal responsibilities better, reducing stress and improving overall well-being. Flexible working arrangements can also help attract and retain top talent and improve employee engagement and productivity.
This blog delves into the various benefits of workplace flexibility and how employers can implement it in their organizations. From increased employee engagement and improved work-life balance to increased productivity and reduced absenteeism, we will dive into the many benefits of workplace flexibility to improve your organization’s health and success.
Yes, Your Workplace Needs More Flexibility – Here’s Why:
Flexibility in the workplace is no longer a luxury; it’s a necessity.
In today’s fast-paced world, being able to work from anywhere, at any time, is crucial for success. It’s the difference between being able to catch that last train home and being stuck in the office until 9 PM or being able to attend your child’s school play and missing an important meeting.
But it’s not just about work-life balance. Workplace flexibility is also essential for employee engagement and productivity. When employees are given the freedom to work in ways that suit them best, they are more likely to be motivated, focused, loyal, and efficient. And let’s be honest, who doesn’t like a bit of flexibility in the workplace?
Employers are progressively coming forward to break the typical corporate shackles and unleash the true potential of their workforce. After all, a flexible workplace is a happy workplace.
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Working towards employee well-being puts companies in a position to reap the benefits of a flexible workplace in the long run. That said, here are some best practices that organizations can implement to make their workplace more beneficial:
1. Flexible work schedule
The traditional scheduled system requires workers to arrive and depart from the workplace at a fixed time. However, a more flexible work schedule suited to the likes and preferences would appeal more to employees, facilitating highly efficient processes. Therefore, introducing a flexible work schedule is among the best workplace flexibility practices.
Telecommunication with teammates residing in different places has allowed organizations to benefit from employees in other geographical locations. The value provided by the advent of sophisticated telecommunication tools has allowed companies worldwide to pull through the travel restrictions levied by governments during the pandemic.
3. Compressed workweek
If provided by an employer, a compressed workweek allows the employee to complete his working hours over fewer days instead of a five-day workweek. This makes space for flexibility and freedom for employees and is commonly observed in industries with longer shifts, such as the healthcare industry. A compressed workweek is another compelling workplace flexibility best practices to consider.
4. Leveraging technology
Sophisticated communication tools and equipment allow employees to perform their tasks efficiently even when they’re not working from the office. Technological advancements, such as scheduling management software, enable employees to outline their availability, giving managers visibility of the entire workforce and scheduling shifts without any hassles.
Read more about the benefits of scheduling management software here.
Common Barriers to Workplace Flexibility
In a perfect world, implementing flexibility in the workplace using the tools mentioned above and tactics is easy and quick. However, several barriers exist in the corporate world that prevents organizations from making their workspace flexible, such as:
1. Lack of trust in employees
Managers may be hesitant to grant flexibility if they believe employees will not work as hard or be as productive when working remotely or on a schedule of their liking, hindering flexibility in the workplace.
2. Difficulty in managing remote teams
Managers may need help overseeing employees who are not physically present in the office and may feel they need to have staff in the office to manage them effectively.
3. Concerns about employee engagement and morale
Managers may worry that employees working remotely or on a flexible schedule will become disengaged from their work and colleagues, which could negatively impact morale and productivity.
4. Resistance to change
Some employees may resist changing their traditional ways of working and may hesitate to adopt new technologies or processes necessary to support flexibility in the workplace.
5. Difficulty in maintaining work-life balance
Traditional employees may struggle to maintain a healthy work-life balance if they work remotely or on a flexible schedule, which could lead to burnout, rising stress levels, or other health problems.
6. Difficulty in Collaboration
Remote working or flexible schedules may make it difficult for employees to collaborate with peers, managers, and subordinates. When peers are not working well together, it can lead to limited resources and support and a lack of accountability and responsibility.
7. Lack of infrastructure
Limited resources may not allow companies to invest in technology or equipment, enabling employees to work remotely or have flexible schedules. Companies that lack the technology and systems needed to support remote working and flexible schedules can find it challenging to implement these strategies.
Top Benefits of Workplace Flexibility
The barriers mentioned above are yet to rule workspace flexibility useless, as it has been observed to revolutionize how people work over the last few years. On that note, let’s move ahead to discuss the benefits of workplace flexibility as to why this trend is the latest buzzword in corporate:
1. Attracts and retains top talent
The more flexible the workplace, the more attractive it gets for high-value candidates. As a flexible workplace does not leave much to complain about, most employees are satisfied with their working conditions, boosting talent retention.
Candidates with family or personal responsibilities cannot generally commit to a traditional 9-5 schedule. Offering flexible work options allows companies to attract more candidates who may not have applied. Also, employees who feel their employer values their well-being and personal lives are more likely to be loyal and committed to the company.
Lastly, when flexible employees feel valued and satisfied with their jobs, they are less likely to leave the company. This helps retain top talent and reduce recruitment costs.
2. A very time-efficient alternative
As most traditional workplaces have a fixed 9 to 5 working schedule, roads get crowded by people commuting to different workspaces simultaneously. This can be avoided by letting people work flexibly and choose where they work. Statistically, an average American spends about 330 hours commuting to work per year. A flexible workplace could enable this time to be utilized more productively. Avoiding daily commutes to the office also allows flexible employees to save time and energy.
Employees may be more effective when they have the flexibility to work during their most productive hours rather than being confined to a set schedule. As per studies, 43% of respondents agree that a flexible workplace enables them to be more productive. With flexibility, employees can also schedule meetings at more convenient times and use their productive hours for more focus-driven work.
3. Supports work-life balance
As per research, 83% of US-based workers face personal life problems caused by immense stress and burnout at work. As flexible employees control their working schedule, it leads them to enforce a better work-life balance that positively influences their productivity.
With the ability to create a schedule that works for their individual needs, employees can better balance their work and personal life demands. For example, employees with young children can benefit from remote work or flexible hours to accommodate their childcare needs.
4. Promotes diversity and inclusion
Workplace flexibility allows employees to work in a way that suits their individual needs, such as flexible hours, remote work, or part-time schedules. This can make it easier for people with disabilities, caregiving responsibilities, or other unique needs to participate in the workforce.
Companies that offer flexibility are more likely to attract a diverse workforce, including people from different backgrounds, ages, and lifestyles. This can lead to a more inclusive and representative workforce.
This can be especially important for people from marginalized groups who may have additional caregiving or community responsibilities.
A study in 2019 stated that companies with a more diverse workforce perform better than their counterparts with less diversity. With a more effective workforce, not only will you attract the best talent, but you will also enhance your business’s bottom line.
5. It helps avoid employee burnout
Stress is the leading facilitator of burnout, and overworking aims to trigger this factor. In a study held in 2021 that surveyed 1000 respondents, 77% agreed to face burnout in their current professional role. Workplace flexibility, in this regard, allows employees to rest when they feel the risk of burning out and resume working when they feel better. Employees who have control over their work schedules and are allowed to work from a location of their convenience experience lower levels of stress and burnout compared to those who do not have access to flexible work arrangements.
This is because greater flexibility in the workplace allows employees to balance their work and personal responsibilities better, leading to less conflict between the two. It can also help employees have more autonomy and control over their work. With optimal independence and control over their work, workers generally have higher job satisfaction, which can lead to lower burnout levels and greater retention.
6. A more cost-effective work setting
Employees save money by not having to commute to a fixed workplace daily, while employers save money on accommodating many workers at their offices. Workers in flexible work settings tend to be more productive and efficient, which can lead to increased output and cost savings for the employer.
They are also less likely to take time off for personal reasons, dodging lost productivity and the expense of hiring temporary employees to fill in for absent workers. Last but not least, it can save the employer money on energy costs, as fewer people are in the office.
When flexible employees have the option to work from home, they can significantly reduce, or even eliminate, the cost of commuting, like gas, parking, and public transportation expenses.
Did you know that 61% of workers with children prefer to work in all-remote settings, while 31% can settle for hybrid opportunities? Parents can avoid expensive childcare services by arranging their job schedule to align with their child’s school schedule or working remotely while their child is home.
It’s a win-win situation for both parties.
As an employer, you should not count out the benefits of workplace flexibility just because it does not align with traditional working arrangements. Flexibility in a workplace has been identified to enhance the overall productivity of employees, regardless of the barriers that propagate skepticism regarding the same.
It is therefore suggested that employers better catch up to the changing trends of how work is done, or they run the risk of being left behind and experiencing high employee turnover.
Don’t let scheduling conflicts hold you back from achieving workplace flexibility. Upgrade to Vocantas and streamline your schedule coordination process to start enjoying the benefits of increased productivity and employee satisfaction.
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