We’re in the midst of a flexible workplace revolution. It’s predicted by the end of 2020, 30 percent of the global workforce will be freelance, outsourced or working remotely at least part of the time.
Flexible hours are a motivator.
Increasingly, research reaffirms that flexibility in working hours makes people happier and more productive.
- In one recent study, 89 percent of respondents cited flexible hours as a productivity motivator.
- When Stanford University economics professor Nicholas Bloom studied this topic, he surveyed 16,000 employees and found that those allowed to work flexibly increased their productivity by 13 percent. They also reported higher job satisfaction levels and took fewer sick leaves than their office-bound counterparts.
People don’t have to be tied to their desks.
The rise of smartphones and mobile devices, combined with a shift to the cloud, means that many employees can work effectively from virtually anywhere. Your office becomes a hot-desk hub where people can come in and use equipment and available working areas only when necessary.
- You can take advantage of multiple communication methods. From emails and video conferences to online tools, there are myriad ways to keep your working teams connected, wherever they are. Even manufacturing employers can allow a much greater breadth of flexibility than ever before.
- Use online project management tools. Applications such as Skype, Basecamp, Slack, Zoom and GoToMeeting enable remote teams to collaborate and stay in regular communication with one another. They facilitate instant messaging and sharing of data and documents in secure environments. Plus, the user experience makes work more engaging and enjoyable, while speeding up the time it takes to complete various tasks.
Boost your employer image.
Your reputation as an employer will be enhanced as you become known for your culture of flexibility. This goes hand in hand with higher retention, so you don’t lose your current superstar workers to the competition.
- You can access a much wider geographic pool of talent. You no longer have to rely solely on people who live locally – or be faced with as many exorbitant relocation costs.
Save money and reduce your carbon footprint.
More people working remotely also saves you money as you can downsize your physical premises. In doing so, you cut overhead costs including utilities, equipment costs and maintenance.
- Research has shown that 36 percent of employees would choose the ability to work remotely over a pay raise. You can reward team members by offering them this benefit, thus keeping your wage costs down and improving your overall business cash flow.
- Boost your green credentials. With fewer employees commuting to work every day, congestion, overcrowding and pollution are reduced. This makes you not just an innovator, but also a better corporate neighbor.
It doesn’t have to be all or nothing.
Embracing a flexible workplace doesn’t mean closing up shop so everyone works from home, every day. In most cases, the best solution is splitting time between being on-site and working remotely. It all depends on your business needs – but in the end, both your employees and your company will reap the rewards.
Partner with Lyons HR including one of our locations in Alabama, Nashville, Atlanta, Knoxville, Charlotte, Jacksonville and more!
For additional guidance on building a more flexible workforce, and hiring to accommodate this strategy, consider partnering with the talent management experts at Lyons HR. Contact us today to learn more.