Change is the only constant thing. This is true, especially in the workplace. The working conditions are naturally and continuously being modified to suit the changing times. A good example is how the Covid-19 pandemic has paved way for numerous changes in the many aspects of human life. One of its strongest effects on the workforce is the implementation of a flexible working policy.
The concept of flexible working arrangements used to be limited to working mums. Not many UK companies even actually offer such privilege to their employees. Recently, though, it has started to become a growing trend. The incoming generation of workers is made up of millennials, and they certainly prefer a flexible working setup.
Benefits of flexible working practices
At a glance, employers do not see the advantages of flexible working arrangements. The traditional way has worked for years and does not seem to require any modifications.
Studies have shown though that employees on flexible working schedules end up more productive, so they make use of their time more effectively. In addition to that, at least 35% of the employee population will choose to work flexibly than to get a pay rise. This can benefit your wages positively.
How to implement a flexible working policy
Before implementing anything, you must take the time to create a written policy about it. This is one of the essentials in starting a flexible working arrangement in the workplace. The policy should be clear, detailed, concise, and fair. Once completed, it must be shared with all the employees.
You must also take the time to talk to the employees about it. This will help avoid starting on the wrong foot. All the procedures must be discussed to ensure comprehension all throughout the team. The line managers and the HR department, especially, must be on top in terms of understanding and implementation of the policy.
Open communication is a must. Questions and clarifications should be encouraged, and never allow gossip and assumptions to take over. These two can easily destroy the team spirit that you have built up.
The employee performance measurement should also be clearly set right from the start. Using the working hours will not be applicable anymore, so criteria for measuring the output will be the only way to evaluate an employee’s performance level. It will determine the contribution and value of an employee in the organization.
It is also helpful to be flexible. You might not chance upon the best flexible working pattern right away. You can try out different methods and review them to see which ones are more suitable for you and your team.
Challenges of having a flexible working hours policy
Shifting to a flexible working arrangement is not a walk in the park. It comes with details that must be carefully looked into to avoid serious negative impacts on the business. Some of the difficulties are maintaining customer satisfaction, dealing with the managers’ attitude of the shift as well as employees’ sense of responsibility with the expectations that come with the new setup.
Help with implementing a flexible working policy
Pink Fluff HR Consultants are adept at helping small business clients to navigate the challenges of implementing a flexible working policy. Employee engagement is key and our people-first appraoch always aim to ensure that company culture and employee motivation are paramount. Contact us today for a free-of-charge and no obligation consultation to get the best from your most expensive asset – your people.