Since June 30th of this year, employees now have the right to ask for flexible working.
This sounded great when it was announced, and there were many articles published all over the Internet and in the real world, all of them trumpeting a new era. This era was different. This era contained happier employees. But where did that leave the employers? Any company now has to ‘reasonably’ consider a flexible working request. Obviously, this means that the number of flexible workers will increase. And that’s a good thing. But what might the long-term impact be of this new way of doing things? Historically, mothers who wanted to care for their children were prime candidates for flexible working. This enabled them to manage this aspect of their life and also continue with their careers. But the market is changing. There are now more opportunities than ever to become a flexible worker. This is primarily down to technology. Pretty much anyone can work from home now on anything. This is especially true in the busy office, where someone can just take their laptop home and continue with that report, or that memo, for example.
The potential in flexible working
However, there is still a definite lean towards mothers or carers when it comes to flexible workers. This will change, in time, as businesses start to see the potential in having workers at home now and then. Consider this. Imagine if you currently rent out an incredibly expensive office (wherever you are, it doesn’t have to be just London) and it’s costing you a fortune. One of your biggest overheads, wouldn’t it be great to trim it back just a little? Why not encourage flexible working? Why not reduce the number of desks you need throughout the week? See the potential? The world is changing, and it is becoming more infused with high quality technology that is effectively removing the need for a physical workspace in an office. So flexible working can actually save you money. Look at your overheads. Is there a smaller, less costly office space on the other side of town? I may be generalising here but sometimes businesses need a fresh approach to their overheads. Worth a thought.
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