What Flexible Working Is & What It Means
Would you like to work from home at least some of the time? Or work different hours that tie in better with the rest of your family?
As well as improving your work-life balance, it has been proved that flexible working can make you more productive. With superfast broadband, flexible working is easier than ever, as an employee can work just as effectively from home as they can from the office.
If you have worked for your employer continuously for at least 26 weeks, you have the right to request a flexible working arrangement, which you employer has a duty to consider.
Different types of flexible working for employees
Thanks to new technology like superfast broadband, many employees are discovering that they can break free of the old 9-5 mentality and improve their work life balance through flexible working. This can make it easier to juggle other commitments such as the school run, spend more time with your family or simply spend more time pursuing other interests.
Flexible working is a very broad area and can include:
- Making more use of conference calls and video conferencing rather than spending time and money travelling to meetings, so you reduce travel and avoid traffic congestion.
- Carrying out some or all of your work from home rather than travel into the office every day
- Mobile working from any location where there is a broadband connection
- Adopting a more flexible approach to when work is done, e.g. maybe it would suit you better to work early morning or late at night sometimes?
- Working part-time
- Using flexi-time to vary your working hours
- Job sharing with another employee
- Term time working or school hours working, so that you can fit your work around the needs of your children
- Compressed hours, where you work more hours in a day but fewer days per week
- Annualised hours, where you commit to a number of hours per year but can be flexible about when you deliver them
- Monthly hours, where you commit to a number of hours per month but can be flexible about when you deliver them
Modern superfast broadband technology can help you achieve this. For example, many companies have installed a Virtual Private Network (VPN) so that an employee working from home or remotely can securely access all the business’s systems from any location.
What are the benefits for you?
As an employee, with flexible working you can:
- Cut down on travel and the stress associated with it
- Travel to and from work outside of the ‘rush hours’
- Work at your peak effectiveness by choosing the times of day when you are at your best
- Concentrate better by avoiding the distractions of a busy office
- Adjust your day so you fit your work around your other responsibilities