Flexible working is not a new idea, but it is one that is gaining popularity. In the past, flexible working practices were reserved for employees that had a specific reason for needing to start later or leave early. But these days, the way that businesses work is changing a lot, and flexible working practices are becoming more common. In most cases, businesses find that employees are more productive when they have more control over the way that they work, which is why you should consider adopting flexible working practices in your business. These are some of the best changes that you can make.
Measure Output Instead Of Hours
If one employee works 8 hours in a day and another only works 6, does that automatically mean that the employee who worked 8 hours got more work done? Not necessarily, and that’s one of the biggest things that businesses get wrong when trying to measure productivity. If an employee is more productive when they take the afternoon off a few times a week, then you should let them. Instead of measuring their hours and insisting that everybody works 8 hours a day, you should measure an employee’s output. As long as they are hitting their targets and you are happy with the amount of work that they are doing each week, let them choose their own hours. There are, of course, some exceptions to this because people do need to be in the office for meetings etc. The best way around this is to have core hours each day when everybody needs to be in the office (between 10am and 3pm, for example) and then let them choose how they make up the rest of their hours outside of that time.
Implement Remote Workers
If an employee doesn’t need to be in the office to do their job, you should consider allowing them to work remotely. As long as you keep them engaged, remote employees are just as productive, if not more so, than your normal employees. Make sure that everyone has the equipment they need to be able to work effectively, this may mean a small investment on your part but it will likely pay off in the end. Check that everyone has a decent internet service at home, they have a laptop and are able to connect to the work drives or while you get started, just buy small flash drives in bulk so that people can save and take home the work they need. When people can set their own hours and create their own working environment, they tend to work harder.
Ditch The Office
Your office needs will change a lot if you adopt flexible working practices, especially if you start using remote workers. Sometimes, you will need a lot of desks, but there will also be days when hardly anybody is in the office. That’s why it’s best to ditch the big office with a long lease and find workspaces with a short term rolling contract instead. You’ll find that renting a serviced workspace that is set up and ready to go is so much easier than renting a large office on a long term contract.The short rental terms also mean that if you find that you don’t need office space for a while, you are not paying for an empty building. But whether you are in the office or working from home, office furniture is a must for a spacious and productive workspace. You can get all your office furniture from Office Reality.
Establish A Culture Of Trust
If you are going to let your employees have more freedom about when and where they work, it’s important that you trust them and they trust you. If you are constantly checking up on people, asking how many hours they are working and making suggestions about how they should organize their schedule, flexible working practices will not be effective. You need to build mutual trust with your employees if this is ever going to work.
Making these changes to your business can improve productivity and cut costs. However, there will be an adjustment period and you may need to experiment to find the system that works best for you.