Flexibility, why it’s such a big deal?
In survey after survey we see that flexibility at work is one of, if not THE, most important requirement employees have. Interestingly enough, in the recent ISS 2020 Vision: Scenarios for the future of the global Facility Management industry report, it was revealed that flexibility was the most important concern for employees concerning work, however, employers rated it 13% less important than employees. This raises so many questions. Why is it so important to employees? Why is this not fully understood by the employing organisations? What’s in it for organisations?
War for quality talent
Organisations need to understand that the war for quality talent is only just getting started. Quality talent increasingly means agile, creative, resilient employees. These types of people do not want to work with rigid hierarchy, laborious bureaucracy, lost, shrouded and isolated in cubicle land. Above talent attraction and management, flexibility offers:
- Engagement and Ownership
- Broadening the Talent Pool
- Great Work Atmosphere
- Smart Strategy
Engagement and Ownership
When you work with people to customize their work-life fit, you aren’t imposing anything on them. You’re treating them with respect and trust. We always assume positive intent therefore this gesture will be returned. When talented employees decide to work from home two days a week, they are making a serious commitment to the organisation. Instead of working for you, they are working with you. This builds enormous buy-in and a better workplace culture.
Broadening the Talent Pool
If talent doesn’t need to be in the office all the time, your talent pool is suddenly global, not local or even regional. You can build productive relationships with talent across the country or across the globe, especially useful when there is increasing desire to move out of cities.
Great Work Atmosphere
Studies show, and our post move surveys confirm, that organisations that offer ABW or other forms flexibility, have less absenteeism and turnover, and higher levels of engagement and productivity. It comes down to giving employees a voice rather employees feeling like just another number. We all like to feel we have the ability to shape our lives, and by working with talent on flexibility, you grant them that. They feel trusted and valued, and their investment in the work, and in the organisation, grows.
Besides from all the cultural benefits, on a purely practical level, flexible working can save costs on supplies, real estate, and utilities. ABW work environments repeatedly deliver impressive business case savings into the tens of millions. The average ROI on your workplace investment is between 2 to 4 years.
But what about the challenges?
Telecommuting can be a challenge for managers and organisations when working flexible. They can’t just approach someone in person to discuss an issue. Balancing schedules and workloads can also be complicated if you’re managing remote or mobile workers. In order to help you overcome the challenges of your new way of working or ABW environment, we look forward getting you in the right flexible direction.
Other blogs, articles and stories of Millie Letori:
- 150 opportunities to get busy or stay calm. You choose?
- What is trust, and why is it so important to us at work
- 3 factors to follow when implementing ABW