- Employers are struggling to ensure flexible work policies are applied equitably across organizations, according to the Nov. 15 results of a Unit4 survey. While the vast majority of organizations surveyed said they offer some form of flexible work, 62% said the tools they have to support flexible work are not adequate, and over three-fourths said policies need improvement.
- Without proper support, employees may quit, the report said; 39% of organizations surveyed said they saw people leave for more flexibility elsewhere in the past year.
- Employers need to do more to make sure flexible work policies are applied equitably, Unit4 said. Less than one-fifth of workers said they can flexibly work without restrictions, such as location requirements.
As there is no perfect, one-size-fits all flexibility approach, employers have struggled since the beginning of the pandemic to determine how they will approach the flexible work question — if at all.
For starters, flexible work may not necessarily indicate remote work. The No. 1 benefit that could improve employee happiness at work, according to survey results from digital payroll solutions firm Deluxe, is flexibility in working hours. In the Unit4 survey, 37% of people said they worked flexible hours.
But the Deluxe findings showed a potential disconnect between what employers offer and what employees recognize as a benefit, signaling a breakdown in communication. While 43% of employees in the Deluxe survey said their company offers flexible scheduling, 63% of employers said they provide it.
Most flexibility questions still largely revolve around whether or not employees are required to be on-site for any part of the week, especially as concerns around remote worker engagement continue to rise. Notably, one of the biggest concerns HR has for remote workers is overscheduling, according to a March report from Challenger, Gray & Christmas — something potentially worsened by a lack of communication.