The world has experienced incredible changes which have come to be the new norm in our lives and society. The new normal may seem petrifying because it affects every aspect of life; this includes businesses, family government, and other walks of life.
Flexible work is any working pattern other than the normal working pattern, that is been accepted by the company. This could mean working shifts, part-time, remote work among other patterns of work.
Before March 2020, work hours were between the hours of 8 am – 5 pm. However, the global pandemic brought about new work patterns of working flexibly and remotely.
Employees have to embrace work flexibility. This concept of work flexibility has been embraced by multi-national companies such as Google, Facebook, Apple and so on.
BENEFITS OF FLEXIBLE WORK CULTURE TO BOTH THE EMPLOYER AND THE EMPLOYEE
- Cost-Effectiveness and Efficiency: This implies that performance is guaranteed with minimal input to achieve maximum results, thereby helping to save associated costs on physical materials, energy, and time taken. With employees working from home, the organization effectively achieve their objectives.
- Improves Retention: Employees look forward to flexible schedules as perks from their employers. It is believed that organizations that allow their employees to work on flexible schedules have the possibility or opportunity of retaining valuable employees. Organizations that promptly activated their remote work policy at the onset of the pandemic were able to retain their key resources.
- Improves Employee Engagement: Employers who allow employees to work flexible hours are saying to the employees that they trust them to get their work done. By doing this, it translates into the following:
- Drastic reduction of Absenteeism: The long list of having employees absenteeism from work due to illness is drastically reduced with the effect of flexible working culture.
- Reduced Turnover: Employees who work flexible hours are more likely to stay loyal because they can balance work and home without feeling guilty or cheated.
- Increases Morale and Productivity: With flexible work, employees don’t have to rush to be at the office every day, especially for residents of heavy traffic prone areas, having to inhale car fumes (unhealthy air), exhausted or stressed up before beginning their day at work. Employees can approach their work with energy, enthusiasm and willingness to carry out their job effectively and efficiently.
- Reduces Stress: Employees who experience high anxiety are less productive and are more likely to take more time off work on a regular basis. This makes flexible work so important to their well-being.
- Capacity Development: Employees have the opportunity to acquire more skills, gain more certifications in relevant jobs, thereby bringing added value acquired for organizational growth.
- Promotes a healthy work – life balance: Flexible work culture is a better way to promote a healthy work–life balance in employees. Juggling between work, home and family can be stressful. A flexible work culture brings about a balance that allows more time with family, thereby limiting stress, burnouts and dissatisfaction.
The Pandemic has bought about a tremendous change in the work settings. Employees now know that they can balance their work, life and family and still be productive, while employers are aware that allowing flexible work keeps the organization going irrespective of where their employees work from.
An article by Chika Nzekwue ACIPM, HR officer – Telnet Nigeria Limited.