Working with Flexible Work Schedules: How to Adapt One
Companies that offer a flexible work schedule often manage to attract top talent and retain their exemplary employees. Most workers seek to have more freedom in their workplace, especially those that can’t commit to rigid working hours due to other obligations, like childcare.
When you develop a flexible working model, you and your company can attract top-quality candidates and keep your employees highly satisfied. Here is some helpful information about this work arrangement to help you create or adapt a policy that works best for your company.
What Does a Flexible Work Schedule Mean?
A flexible work schedule is a work arrangement that allows an employee to work hours that differ from a company’s regular ones. These normal working hours are generally from 8 or 9 a.m. to 5 or 6 p.m., especially in an environment meant for exempt employees, as they aren’t eligible for overtime.
If you tally them, you get a 40-hour workweek. Remember that all scheduled work allocates time for a lunch hour, whether the employee uses it or not. Formerly, people thought flexibility meant that an employee might take an extra hour in the morning in exchange for losing one in the afternoon to have a 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. workday.
Nowadays, employees tend to demand more of their companies and employers. They might request different flexible scheduling options, or maybe an arrangement that can vary depending on their life’s happenings at the moment. For instance, workers might want a flexible working hour, but not on days where they or their children have a doctor’s appointment.
A flexible schedule in a non-exempt workplace might depend on how much interdependence there is. Nurses are often unable to have a flexible work schedule, as they need to find someone else to cover their hours. It’s the same with other customer-facing jobs like retail and service stations.
Flexible Work Schedule Benefits
Giving your employees more freedom to work can provide many benefits for your company. Some incredibly talented professionals might not apply for jobs in organizations with strict work hours, whether it’s due to outside obligations or a second job. Other workers might be a perfect fit for your company but might live too far for a daily commute. Employing a flexible schedule can remove these restrictions.
Another flexible work schedule benefit is an overall increase in productivity. When people can choose their working hours, they generally select those in which they perform best. It allows some employees to avoid rush hour traffic. Workers might also dedicate themselves more to their tasks, as flexible work arrangements tend to increase engagement.
A flexible work schedule can also be beneficial for employees who struggle to balance their personal and work life. People who struggle to find time to spend with their friends, family, or hobbies often feel more stressed, increasing the risk of burnout. Their productivity and performance may also suffer greatly.
Flexible Workplace Environment Expectations
Employers still expect their employees to work their required hours in a flexible work schedule. Most of these work arrangements involve a compressed workweek or a flexible working hour. Telecommuting is also a popular choice. Understanding these flexible work schedule ideas can help you adapt them effortlessly in your company:
The most common schedule for a compressed workweek is a four-day setup. In these, workers have four ten-hour days. There are some other variations such as 12-hour days, but they can be incredibly exhausting. This flexible work arrangement gives employees an extra day or two to spend to themselves each week.
A flexible daily schedule lets workers come and go from the office at the hours they desire. They can turn up to work and leave for their home early or arrive and stay until later. Most employers require employees with this arrangement to work some core hours – for example, between 10 a.m. and 3.p.m.
It’s a work from home schedule or remote work policy that lets employees work from anywhere they want. They can do so as long as they have the necessary technology to complete their duties. Some employers use this arrangement as a hybrid remote work schedule in which workers have to come to the office on certain days and are free to work remotely on the rest.
Organizations that employ the most flexible workspace solutions tend to have employees that come and go when they want from the office. Regardless, their responsibilities are the same. They need to perform their job adequately and achieve what the company expects of them.
How Can Businesses Apply Flexible Work Schedules
Employers might be concerned about how a flexible working hour might negatively impact performance and make supervising more challenging. However, if they commit to the right strategies, they can eliminate most of the detriments, improve the company’s performance, and strengthen the bonds between workers.
It’s necessary to set clear expectations. Communicate your boundaries and expectations clearly before implementing a flexible work schedule. Ensure your staff understands that they still have to put in their required hours, and let them know of their options.
Inform them of when they need to be in the office or when you expect them to check in with their team leaders. It’s also essential to let them know of the consequences of failing to meet these expectations.
Providing adequate technology is also vital if you want to adapt or implement a flexible working hour successfully. It’s even more critical for companies that have telecommuting employees. Using a suitable hybrid working app is necessary to enable workers to communicate and collaborate quickly regardless of where they are.
If you want a flexible work schedule to work, you must have self-disciplined employees that can work efficiently without supervision. It’s vital to let them know that they’re responsible for their actions regardless of the place and time they work. Don’t get rid of your flexible work program because some employees are failing to meet expectations. Instead, hold them accountable.
The Bottom Line
Having a flexible work schedule is a benefit that most employees can significantly appreciate. However, there are also many benefits that a company can enjoy with them, as long as it implements or adapts these work arrangements adequately. Setting clear expectations and providing suitable technology are some of the things you can do to make it work, regardless of the flexible work type you employ
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