With the current situation in many workplaces due to COVID-19, flexible, and remote/home-based working situations are very prevalent.
Currently many small, medium and large businesses have adapted and many employees that once were based in the office on a daily basis are working from home and, the full return to office date is unknown.
This new environment has forced employers to quickly implement this working arrangement.
The following discusses how this type of environment, in most circumstances, can be beneficial.
Considering the benefits of a more flexible work arrangement for employees of your company? We don’t blame you. We’re big believers that flexible work arrangements are the future of many (if not most) workplaces.
And we aren’t alone…some pretty smart people agree! According to a recent Inc.com article:
“…Bill Gates shared what he thinks is the most important perk companies can give the best employees: flexible work arrangements.”
Also from the same article:
“Now a new study from Harvard Business School says companies that let their employees “work from anywhere” and work whenever they want wind up with employees who are more loyal, more productive and cost less.”
Why Does Flexibility Work?
What are some of the reasons why the ability to work outside of the typical office environment is so popular and generates loyalty?
- Employees can choose to live in more affordable locations, which in turn boosts their real incomes;
- They can more easily take care of other personal needs, such as caring for children or elderly parents;
- Less time spent commuting;
- More flexibility to travel and set their own schedules
Tips for a Successful Flexible Work Arrangement Rollout at Your Business
1. Define very clear outcomes and measures of success
When your team is dispersed to more locations and working on more flexible schedules, you’ll have less oversight of exactly how they do their daily work. The best way to make this work for both employer and employee is to have very clear outcome-based metrics that your employee’s performance will be measured against. After all, it’s the results of their work that you’re really after.
2. Put as much of your work processes and tools online
Each employee in a new location effectively creates a new office for your business, which can create a logistical nightmare if you don’t have the right tools and processes in place to support them.
So what are the “right” tools and processes?
That will vary by the nature of your business of course, but we can say with certainty that you’ll be better off by transitioning as much as you can online.
Online systems and processes are, by their nature, more easily scaled to multiple locations.
1. Hold virtual face-to-face meetings on a regular basis
Getting face time with your team is still incredibly valuable, no matter how flexible your work arrangements are. A great way to accomplish this is by using tools with video call capabilities such as Facebook Workplace, Zoom, or Slack.
All of these tools are great for quick one-on-one meetings and can accommodate large team meetings as well, creating more of a ‘team’ feel and more personal connections.
2. Bring your team together at least once each year
If possible, we highly recommend that you still find a way to get your teams together in-person at least once each year. Nothing beats the opportunity to connect and meet the people you work with every day.
Be Flexible In Your Approach
Pun intended! Seriously though, we’ve learned that making a flexible work arrangement policy work takes time, commitment, and flexibility – but the rewards can be worth it!