Is 2016 The Year Of Workplace Flexibility?

Two recent surveys found that although 80 percent of organizations surveyed offer flexible work arrangements to their employees, only 37 percent have a written policy concerning these flexible work options.

According to the surveys, although 67 percent of managers offer their employees flexible work options, only 42 percent of them support flexibility as an "essential element to organizational success." Still, 48 percent of managers believe teleworkers are as productive as in-office workers. The most common flexibility options offered are "telework days on an ad hoc basis, flex time and compressed workweeks." 

The survey also found that 41 percent of organizations do not provide widespread access to flexible work programs, and 44 percent do not promote their flexibility programs to job applicants. Only 3 percent of organizations surveyed have tried to measure productivity, employee engagement, and performance to determine the return on investment of flexibility programs. "Majority of U.S. Employers Support Workplace Flexibility," businesswire.com (Oct. 6, 2015).

Employees appreciate workplace flexibility, and offering such programs can be a valuable tool in recruitment and improved workplace satisfaction.

A 2014 study published by the White House Council of Economic Advisors found that providing employees with flexible workplace programs reduces turnover and absenteeism, helps recruitment, and improves employee health and productivity—all of which save employers money.

However, as the two recent surveys show, although most workplaces do support flexibility in the workplace, many managers continue to question the value, and few organizations see flexibility as important enough to create policies around.

Studies suggest employers would be wise to consider offering flexible work options to their employees, and, equally importantly, to create a written policy to maximize the efficacy of their flexibility program.

If you do make your workplace more flexible, make sure to track employee productivity and satisfaction following the changes to determine your return on investment.

Via:  Hartford Help