Flexible working ‘good for productivity’

Flexible working 'good for productivity'

Almost all HR professionals believe flexible working is the best way to boost productivity, according to a new survey.
The study by recruitment firm Ortus revealed that 96 per cent of respondents think allowing workers to work flexibly is the most effective way of increasing output, with three in five professionals stating that enabling employees to work from home when needed can also be beneficial.
Eight in ten respondents suggested better talent management would help productivity in the long term, while 67 per cent said the same about improved succession management.
The survey also indicated that some employers would do well to focus on the health and wellbeing of their staff by introducing gym and exercise breaks during the working day, with 52 per cent of HR professionals saying this would aid output.
"Getting the most out of the workforce is a core function of the HR profession and attitudes have changed about how to achieve this. The focus is more on the health and happiness of staff rather than all-nighters and lots of meetings," commented Stephen Menko, UK director at Ortus.
He added: "Allowing people to work around their lives rather than the other way around is easier today."
Indeed, there are plenty of technology solutions that can help businesses implement flexible working policies, such as free conference call services and online messaging tools to keep employees connected with their colleagues in the office whenever they work from home.
Taking advantage of these can not only improve productivity, but also boost job satisfaction. A survey carried out by office space provider Regus earlier this year showed that 34 per cent of UK office workers have cut short their sleeping hours to make room for work and personal commitments, while a fifth of parents have missed important events like their child's school play or birthday party.
In addition, one in five respondents said they feel obliged to overcompensate for taking time off to deal with family or personal issues.