HR Trend of the Week: Flexible Work Hours

One of the more recent perks that job candidates and
employees are seeking is the ability to have flexible work hours. Our lives are
becoming busier by the day, so having the capability to adjust your schedule so
that it works better for you is a huge benefit more employers are offering.
According to a study from HR Zone, when participants were asked what engages
them most at work, almost a third (29%) favored the ability to work when they
desire.

Many companies are forced to remain in a rigid schedule
specifically because of the industry they’re in, the staffing structure, or
customer/client demands. However, for those organizations with a business model
that allows for flexible working opportunities, incorporating this into the
workplace offering can have great benefits.  

Types of Flexible
Work Hours

There are a variety of ways that someone can restructure
their time. The most common arrangement is using a flexi-time scheme where, for
example, an employee works from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. rather than from 9 a.m. to 5
p.m. A compressed workweek is another way to manage hours, such as working four
10-hour days. Less commonly, some organizations offer job sharing, which is a
structured form of part-time work. A 50:50 split is common but not the only
option. Some employers find it best that both workers have at least one day in
common, so they can share information and brief each other on current tasks and
issues.

Benefits to the
Employees

Adjustable work hours is a top priority for a number of employees
who consider work-life balance to be of primary importance. Work-life balance
advantages, for example, may include being able to take a child to school or to
the doctor or allowing time for sports training. Flexible schedules can give
employees greater control of their time off, and time spent commuting can be
shortened by avoiding rush hour traffic.

Benefits to the
Employers

Flexible hours also offer many advantages for the employer. In
providing employees the freedom to tailor their working day to their individual
needs and desires, this not only engages existing employees and increases their
satisfaction, but also makes the organization more attractive to prospective
top talent. Flexible working may also be saving employers money, considering
that when employees decide to work in places other than the static office
environment, it reduces the need to spend money on overhead such as office
space.

Issues Surrounding
Flexible Hours

While the overall idea of flexible hours sounds great, some
concerns arise with allowing employees to steer away from the typical 9-5
schedule. There is potential for the increased flexibility to cause trust and
supervision issues with employees that abuse the policy. Communication between
staff who work at varying times can become strained if they are meeting less
frequently. In addition, achieving fairness for all staff members can be a
difficult task when everyone may want something different.

If you have the ability to give your employees flexible
working hours, you should consider if the pros of implementing a policy
outweigh the cons. As the workplace develops, we can expect more and more
employees to seek out more flexibility in the workplace. It is imperative to prepare
for this and, where possible, cater to employees’ desires for greater freedom
and a better work-life balance, while also fitting with the workplace
environment and culture.

Key Takeaways:

1. More employees, especially those in younger
generations, are looking specifically for flexible working hours.

2. There are benefits to the employee and the employer,
but a policy would not be without potential issues.

3. Consider your industry and if flexible working
hours could be an option for your organization to improve the work-life balance.

Follow Converge HR
Solutions on Facebook and Twitter to keep up with the HR Trend of the Week.
Visit www.convergehrsolutions.com to learn more about how we can help your
business.

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