Skip to main content

Flexibility in the workplace

Is flexibility now a reality in the workplace?   And is it really working?   The assumption of control over one’s own time and deliverables does look like a great way to work and live, and it seems to be is a high priority for those entering the business world.

Decision makers in business, along with HR managers and recruitment consultants, are very much aware that both current employers and new recruits are looking for guidance and ideas as how to achieve work/life balance.

It is accepted that this balance has to form part of the workplace. Yes people still need to prove themselves, initiative is still expected, hard work and commitment are still viewed as non-negotiable – but the dynamics of employer/ employee relationship has changed.

And it is innovation in ICT that has paved the way.

The advantages of a mobile workforce can include an increase in productivity, lower total cost of ownership and a wider, more direct reach to the market.

In essence an employee should be just as effective and productive within his or her own environment, working at their own time & pace as one who clocks in at an office every day.  The employee does need to be aware of the risks and challenges around promotion and receiving new projects when working predominantly from home, as the lack of regular interaction with the decision makers can impact on opportunity.

Very clear job specifications, requirements and a successful induction program are key, as is a reward structure based on deliverables.    Realistically, it does mean that there has to be a business model and infrastructure that supports flexibility, and this can be a problem.   

When the term flexibility is used, what does it actually mean?  While it can be as traditional as different time slices in the day, it can also be about not coming into the office except for specific tasks or meeting or job sharing. This is something of a grey area because it really does depend on the nature of the business, the specific tasks assigned to that job portfolio and the market in which that business operates.

For example a Receptionist needs to be at his/her desk to allow access into the building from 8 to 5. In most cases, it just isn't practical for this to be a flexible role.

At the same time an Information and Communication Technology support and service consultant/ technician cannot enforce terms of employment that guarantees fixed daily working hours – that criteria simply does not suit the environment.

Increased traffic, child care issues, costs of business space, will all feed the flexibility model.   The buzz around apps and solutions that enable employers and employees to manage functionality from outside the office, underlies the trend.    The Accsys Employee Self Service being developed for smart phones is directly related to a market requirement for managers to know about resource issues wherever they are.

In the end, the level of flexibility has to be negotiated and decided upon by both employer and employee and, if both sides are committed to the concept, it can improve morale, and add real value. 

Popular posts from this blog

3 things to do BEFORE you resign

or sign a new contract…
1.Confirm your notice period ·A lot of companies allow 30 days from date of resignation, but many ask for a calendar month
2.Check your restraints ·If you are joining a competitor ·If you are joining a client
3.Find out when your last payment will be transferred ·Companies have been burned by paying over on the 25th, and people not returning, so they may delay payment transfer until the last official working day, or even the first day of the following month.  You may need to make special arrangements regarding debit orders ….
Both your current company and your new one deserve to be fairly treated.   Knowledge of the policies makes this possible.
Even if the policies don’t make sense to you, you agreed to them when you signed your contract.
HR managers will tell you how many great working relationships are damaged because people don’t follow policy when resigning. It’s worth taking the time for many good reasons.  Building a solid career can depend just as much on how you …

Favourite Words

Shambolic – it simply sounds better to me than chaotic.. Do lots of people have favourite words or just a few of us nerds? As everybody is starting to think holidays (or maybe you prefer to vacation), it seemed a good time for a different type of blog. Have you noticed how many words with pleasant associations sound more attractive than those that describe the negative. Watching a TV quiz show the other night made me wonder. The contestant hated bulbous and gusset! There have always been some words that appeal to me, triskaidekaphobia being one. I now know that I had the meaning wrong! I thought it meant fear of Friday the 13th, but it is simply a fear of the number 13, so how does paraskevidekatriaphobia grab you? That is the real word for fear of Friday the 13th. Love it! Now I prefer rural to bucolic, but Robert Beard (see below) selected the latter as one of his favourites. Effervescent is a gorgeous word, so descriptive and onomatopoeic while ethereal makes me think of gossamer and fairie…

Resignation - keep building relationships

Resignation – avoid burning those bridges It has been a great pleasure working with a colleague like you. Now, you are off to your next big challenge! Good luck and farewell!
Isn’t that what we all want to hear when we leave?  We were appreciated and we will be missed.
The need for all parties to maintain professional conduct in the event of resignation is critical, particularly now when we are working within an unsettled socio-economic climate. Employees should avoid damaging relationships, and employers need to adopt a neutral approach and ensure that there are policies and processes that enable the separation to be objectively handled.  For example: ·A formal resignation letter is required·A formal acceptance of resignation is issued confirming any special conditions·An exit interview takes place·Handovers are planned and executed
Our HR team advise those who resign their position to adhere to a few golden rules. Failure to do so could harm whatever bonds have been formed at the workpla…