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A business is challenged by generational and societal shifts. When we want to stay relevant and provide a good experience for both our clients and customers, we need to react to these changes. One method of adaption is to stay flexible and offer each employee the circumstances they can flourish under, to make sure they are happy and motivated. A ‘flex time policy’ can be a great solution.
What exactly is a flex time policy, why are employees looking for it, and how can we implement it?
A flex time policy gives employees control over their work hours. Specifically, they can alter the start and/or end times of their workday. The staff members work the regular amount of scheduled hours, but can arrange them in a way that suits their private life the most.
Implementing a flex time policy can be challenging. The employers need to make sure that everybody is treated equally while the businesses’ needs are still met.
After all, when every employer chooses their own working hours, it can create a disconnect and increase the potential for miscommunication and interrupted processes.To avoid this, we need to find ways to collaboratively create the best schedule solutions. Digital tools, like the time tracking software from Papershift, can be a great help.
Learn here, why it is helpful to create a flexible work environment, and how your business will benefit from it and assisting tech solutions.
Flex time does not reduce the hours an employer works, nor does it improve their financial situation. However, it allows them to find the most convenient room for their working hours in their private lives, and the other way around. This work/life balance is a key factor when it comes to employee happiness.
Most humans are very happy to work and find it fulfilling. Many studies have found that the financial compensation is not the most important perk at work. As long as the person’s cost of living is covered, they would rather work in a pleasant environment than choose a pay raise.
Even if staff members enjoy their work, some private obligations make it difficult to fit both work and private life into 24 hours, or rather around 18, if you include a healthy amount of sleep.
Simple factors, like buying groceries outside of the rush-hours or finding doctor’s appointments quickly, are a big help. Even social obligations and time with your loved ones do not need to be fit into the few hours after your workday and matched with the free time of others. Instead, employees can combine work and private life in a way that is both productive and convenient, and adapt to any pressing matters on either side of their life.
It also makes it easier to fit in interesting challenges, like classes for self-improvement (both personal and professional), and take the time to re-energize. This leaves the employee healthier, happier, and more productive.
There are upsides for the company as well. For example, if many of your workers work flexible or even remotely, you can rent smaller office spaces, reduce rent, and costs for energy and office supplies. It will also help you offer your clients longer office hours during which your service is available.
As an employer, it’s a great strategy to focus on your employee happiness. However, we need to make sure that the business needs are met.
Some tasks require interactions between staff members, others a staffed service desk at any point of the workday. With uncontrolled flexibility, you could easily come across situations where no staff member is working or the required personnel for a multi-person task is missing, putting stuff on hold till they come in.
- It is important to implement core times, when every relevant employee is available, and allow them to distribute the rest of their work hours freely.
When your staff members request flex time, you can find equally beneficial solutions for individual employees and the company. Take the time to involve them in finding the best solutions. In the approval process, you can determine which kind of arrangement they are happy with and what you can offer them.
This is where time tracking and scheduling software like the one from German developer Papershift comes in handy. It allows you to give your employees mobile access to programs that:
- communicate their schedules & changes
- allow them to enter their availabilities
- give them the option to apply for open shifts
- plan vacations and substitutes in advance
- keep track of fulfilling their 8h workday, even when it’s fragmented
This way, the shift plans are a collaborative effort, which leaves the employees feeling valued and in charge of their own lives. At the same time, the software’s analysis tools can look at the data and calculate optimal shift plans, alerting you to any under or over staffed shifts, and make sure every employee meets their required hours.
Flexible work hours are beneficial for both employees and employers. The staff members can choose when to work and have an easier time combining their private obligations with their job. This will leave them less stressed, happier, healthier, and more productive. At the same time, longer timespans of availability to clients and the possibility to rent smaller, shared workspaces are great opportunities to cut costs and increase revenue.
To make sure the business demands are still met, a planning and time tracking software is a great tool. They turn flexible scheduling into a collaborative effort while using their processing power to create optimized solutions.