More than ever we hear of job seekers looking for flexible work arrangements when searching for their new opportunities.
We recently surveyed 1200 creative, digital and marketing talent in Australia asking them about their job role, skill/career development and progression, including questions around flexible workplace desires.
What we identified when it comes to flexibility in the workplace is that employees are not looking to work remotely 100% of the time. Is that surprising to you?
What does workplace flexibility mean to you, as an individual?
The nature of the way we work is changing. Technology is constantly improving, giving us the tools to take advantage of cloud hosted environments to break free from our desks. When asked, over 70% of respondents surveyed wanted to work remotely ‘some of the time’ as well as flexible start and finish times.
"This is something companies need to take seriously, after all it ranked in the top 3 things employees are looking for when searching for new job opportunities."
Benefits of a flexible workplace:
- Higher morale, staff will be much happier and therefore more engaged with their work
- Higher productivity, allowing staff to choose their own hours (within reason) will help them realise when they work their best
- Better work/life balance for employees
- A give-take company culture that values each employee’s different needs
- Staff retention
Both employees and managers play equal part in making workplace flexibility a success
As a manager, you probably wonder how one measures what your employees are doing during their chosen work hours or working from home. The answer is an ‘outcome based culture’.
"Outcome based cultures focus more on agreed outcomes that people are producing and less on the where and when."
Employees need to deliver on agreed outcomes and leaders need to hold employees accountable to these outcomes. Independence is a fundamental working condition for this type of culture and it has to be based on trust. With freedom comes responsibility, not only for employees but leaders as well. The outcomes produced need to be of quality and be delivered on time.
More often than not, when productivity drops leaders will assume the flexible working is the cause. However, productivity and flexibility are two separate issues and need to be managed as such.
Now is the time for agencies to embrace an outcome-based culture
Every workplace is productive, profitable and safer when employees are engaged. Engaged workers are emotionally invested in helping themselves and the company thrive, those that aren’t engaged cause a threat.
As an agency leader you can gauge an employee’s engagement by having short/long term career conversations, regular check in’s and even conducting regular staff surveys. Once engagement is recognised this will enable the trust to allow your team to work flexibly and be confident they will deliver on agreed outcomes.
In turn you will see your team flourish!