Most business leaders understand that recruiting and retaining the right staff is paramount to the success of an organisation. At Absolute Personnel, we see more and more companies recognising that flexibility is key when attracting potential employees and since 2017, there has been a significant shift in the number of employers promoting flexible working in their job adverts. Many businesses offer flexible working to employees because of its benefits both to the employee as well as the employer. The advantages of flexible working include healthy promotion of a work-life balance, increased employee productivity and higher profitability. 

How does flexible working benefit businesses?

You will often find that staff are more motivated by a positive work environment than financial reward. Developing a flexible working environment for your employees can be a huge source of motivation. Giving employees that flexibility gives staff the freedom of completing tasks at a time which best suits their needs and when they feel the best result will be achieved.

Not only does it offer numerous benefits to employees, but quality flexible working can also help organisations. By advertising flexible working, organisations can attract talent which supports diversity as well as improve employee job satisfaction and loyalty. Flexible working can also assist in addressing skill shortages. Implementing flexible working schemes can empower organisations to be more agile and responsive to change.

Over 59%1 of employees believe that flexible working is the most important benefit when looking for a job and 87%² of us would like to work more flexibly. As our economy begins to shift, employers will need to adapt to flexible working, not only for the benefit of retaining current staff, but to also attract the future workforce. Millennials are introducing a new ‘norm’ to the way in which they work. They want to have the opportunity to control their own hours and working location. They’ll often expect a healthy work-life balance and this will be considered as one of their priorities when searching for a job. Therefore, companies will need to formally prioritise and promote work-life balance and flexible working arrangements in order to attract new recruits.

What type of roles can businesses advertise as having flexible working?

Examples of different roles and seniority levels working flexibly, in a variety of ways:

  • Care workers, delivery drivers and manufacturing workers can have flexible shift patterns.
  • Employees working in a 24/7 customer service role can have flexible start and finish times.
  • Part-time working for food retail outlets.
  • Event organisers can have the ability to work from home for a set number of days.
  • Senior managers working additional hours flexibly from home.
  • Construction workers have shift hours.
  • Job shares for HR/Personnel employees.
  • Manufacturing workers requesting night shift work and taking time off in lieu when overtime has been carried out.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of flexible working?

 AdvantageDisadvantage
EmployeeA healthy work life balanceA positive impact on attitudes and relationshipsPositive mental health and well-beingFlexibility for everyday life, interests and commitmentsFlexibility for emergenciesIncreased feeling of personal control over schedule and work environmentNo clear definition between work and homeFlexible working can mean that communication is not as strong in the workplace Technology can be costly if not covered by your employerDistractions can occur meaning you are less proactive and will need to work overtime in order to get tasks done
EmployerA healthy work-life balance is promoted, motivating staff Attract new candidates with this initiativeReduce the turnover of valued staffIncrease employee engagement and loyaltyPromote a positive work cultureDiversity and inclusionPositive influence on work performanceSome employees may take advantage of the flexibility and abuse the freedomEmployers may struggle to constantly monitor employeesCommunication difficulties can occurCan cause employee isolationSome employees can struggle to self-motivate

How should businesses advertise flexible working?

In our experience, offering a job which includes flexible working can increase the talent pool and attract quality candidates who are suitable for the job. When promoting the job position, consider using a tag line such as ‘flexible working available’ in order to engage job seekers. Ensure the job requirements outlined in the job description align to the flexible working opportunities you’re offering. For example, you’ll need to identify where these activities need to be carried out, can they be completed at home? Also consider the roles dependencies and how many hours will be needed in order to carry out the job.

How can Absolute Personnel help?

At Absolute Personnel we work closely with employers to positively portray their company ethos, values and culture. We help employers to incorporate creative incentives, such as flexible working into their employer branding and job advertisements as a way of attracting quality candidates.

For any further recruitment enquiries please contact the Absolute Personnel team on 01743 461239 or e-mail info@absolutepersonnel.co.uk

References

1. https://employeebenefits.co.uk/issues/may-2018/59-flexible-working-job-hunting/

2. https://www.cipd.co.uk/Images/flexible-working-guide-2019-v2_tcm18-58713.pdf