A flexible work schedule gives a lot of freedom to the team. But what are the pros and cons? How to set up the right flexible hours in your workplace? Read on!
Flexible hours refer to the work schedule that allows employees to start and finish the workday at their own convenience. This means that there are no fixed work timings and employees do not have to come to work at any set time. This system is in contrast with the traditional work arrangements.
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What is flex shift?
What is Flexi shift? A Flexi shift is when an employee is required to work a fixed amount of hours during a particular time period at a shift of his/her own choosing. The shift working timings may depend on the employee’s availability and convenience.
What is flexible scheduling in the workplace?
Flexible scheduling in the workplace allows employees to choose their preferred working flexible hours that differ from the traditional schedules. Flexible scheduling at the workplace gives employees the power to make their own work schedule and find a work-life balance that suits them.
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Employer expectations from flex hours system
Before implementing a flexible hour policy, employers should know their expectations from the flex hours system. It is also important to make these expectations very clear to the employees in order to avoid any sort of misunderstanding. Flex schedule policy must be prepared in advance.
Minimum working hours criteria in flexi hour system
Employees working flex hours are expected to meet or exceed the minimum working hour criteria. Employers can fix the number of flexible hours required in a week from the employees for e.g, 40 hours/week.
Flexing hours policy require employees to work core hours
Few companies need employees to be present in the office during core hours and the rest of the work can be done during flexible hours. Flex hours policy should define these core hours, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., as an example.
Meet deadlines during flex hours jobs
It doesn’t matter at what time the employee is working as long as the set deadlines are met. This is an important aspect of the flex hours policy. Employees working flexible hours are expected to finish work within the deadline.
Flexible schedule requires employees to fulfill goals
Managers and employees should mutually agree on weekly and monthly goals to be achieved by the employee during the flex hours schedule. The employee is responsible to fulfill goals under the flexible hours’ policy. Employees in a flexible workplace are still responsible for performing their job efficiently.
Flexi working expects employees to be faithful
Employers extending flexible hours policy are putting their trust in the employees to work diligently. Employers expect employees working flex hours to make effective use of company time and resources in order to contribute towards the company’s growth. Misuse of the policy is unethical.
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Benefits of flexible working arrangements for employees
More and more people are looking for organizations that allow flexible hours of work. It makes employees feel that they are in control of their lives. Let us look into several other benefits of flexible working arrangements for employees that make it lucrative,
Flexi work allows work-life balance
Work-life balance is one of the main benefits of flexible working arrangements for employees. Employees can work at flexible hours that suit them and allows them to create a balance between both personal and professional relationships.
A flexible workweek allows fulfilling personal obligations
Amongst the several benefits of flexible working arrangements for employees, the opportunity to fulfill personal obligations is another winner. Some people prefer flexible hours for working due to personal reasons such as taking care of the elderly, kids, sick family members, etc.
Flexible work arrangement makes employees most productive
Benefits of flexible working arrangements for employees include the opportunity to work when they feel they are the most productive. Flexible hours consider the fact that not everyone can be productive during the traditional daytime working hours.
A flexible work environment help avoid rush hours
The benefits of flexible working arrangements for employees consist of avoiding rush hour traffic. Employees waste a large chunk of their valuable time stuck in traffic while commuting to the office. Flexible hours can help in avoiding this.
Rejection of traditional and unhealthy working style
Flexible hours help in employee retention and employee hiring by rejecting the traditional and unhealthy ways of working. The benefits of flexible working arrangements for employees have made the new generation to be more inclined towards a flexible system of working.
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Disadvantages of flexi times to employers
Implementing flexi times might not always be a good idea. There are several complications and challenges that employers need to overcome in order to make the flexible hours model work effectively. Let us look into the different disadvantages of flextime that employers may face,
Flex shift makes it harder to keep track of work
Flexi times means managers will not be able to supervise their employees at all times. Few employees might be working remotely during flexible hours. This makes it harder for employers and supervisors to stay updated with their employee’s work progress.
Flexible work hour lacks employer supervision
Employers may face the challenge of supervising their employees during Flexi times. Special provisions should be made prior to implementing a flexible hours policy in the workplace. Few employees get complacent in the absence of the manager’s supervision which might affect work productivity.
Flexibility working hours may lead to employee isolation
Employees working flexible hours may often feel isolated and lonely. Employers need to pay attention to such employees and involve them in day-to-day activities to keep them occupied. Flexi times employees should be made to feel like part of the team.
Flexi work hours can cause communication difficulties
Employers often face communication difficulties while dealing with employees working flexible hours. Since face-to-face communication is not possible all the time, managing flexi-time might pose challenges in front of the managers. Separate communication platforms are required to stay connected.
Few employees can misuse the flexi working hours benefit
Employees working flexi hours might take the wrong advantage and indulge in recreational activities during company time. Few employees find it difficult to work without supervision and struggle with flexible hours working. Misusing company resources is a serious issue faced by employers.
Disadvantages of flexible hour job to employees
Flexible hour job shifts allow employees to pick their own working hours. Flexible hours of working might not always be in favor of the employees causing a lack of productivity. Here are some of the disadvantages of flexible work schedules faced by employees,
Flexible hour job shifts mean employees working at different flexible hours as per their convenience. This means they will miss out on the social aspect of a workplace as they are not in regular contact with their team members.
Flex working hours may lead to procrastination
Employees doing flexible hour job shifts may often get lazy and procrastinate their work due to a lack of fixed working hours and supervision. Procrastination due to flexible hours then leads to stress as employees create tighter deadlines for themselves by delaying their work.
Flexibility working may lead to working overtime
Employees often lose track of time while working and mess up their work-life balance by working overtime. As there are flexible hours of work, managers often feel it completely alright to ping at unconventional hours that lead to flexible hour job overtime.
Flex work hours may give the wrong idea in the society
People working flexible hour job shifts might give the idea of having no work to society. Flexible hours are often done remotely from home which might give an impression to other people that the employee is free all the time.
Flexible work arrangements might cause stress
Flexible hour job shifts often lead to unwanted stress amongst the employees when they are not able to manage time efficiently. Employees working flexible hours may observe low productivity and growth at the workplace that leads to an increase in stress.
How to implement flexible schedules in the workplace?
Proper planning is needed to implement flexible schedules in the workplace. Blindly agreeing to give flexible hours of working to employees is not a very feasible option. Here are the different steps one can follow to implement an efficient flexible program in place.
Start working flexible hours as a pilot project
Flexible schedules in the workplace must be started on a pilot basis to check efficiency. The flexible hours’ facility might not be suited to your particular organization and a pilot project would also reveal loopholes in the system if any.
Evaluate the outcome of flexible work
After implementing flexible schedules in the workplace for a month or a week, evaluate the results. Weigh out the pros and the cons to understand if flexible hours of working suit your company. Understand the problems faced and address the issues to make it a more workable model.
Implement flexibility schedule with good communication channels
A flexible schedule in the workplace needs a good communication medium to keep employees connected even when they are working flexible hours. Before implementing flexible work schedules, discuss with your employees about the different communication channels to see what suits them the best.
Train to manage employees with flexible schedules
Flexible schedules in the workplace are not common in many organizations, hence special training should be provided to the managers and team leaders. The special training must focus on training managers on managing a team working flexible hours.
Plan flexible work environments for your organization
Flexible schedules in the workplace vary from company to company. There is no one plan that fits all hence planning out a system that works for your organizational needs is a very important step. Flexible hours must be systemized before agreeing to them.
Key components to be included in a flexible schedule policy
If you want to implement a successful flexible schedule policy, you need to ensure that you have included all the key components that are required to make it efficient. Flexible hours of working can go against you if you are not prepared.
Include clear work expectations in flex schedule policy
Before implementing a flexible schedule policy, make your expectations from the employees absolutely clear. Convey your requirements and let them know the minimum amount of working flexible hours you are expecting. Avoid any miscommunication and keep the weekly and daily goals clear.
Flexi hours policy must include minimum working hours
While implementing a flexible schedule policy, employees often procrastinate the work due to the lack of supervision. To avoid such scenarios, managers and supervisors must communicate the minimum number of flexible hours expected from the employee dedicated to working.
Flexible work schedules and remote communication tools
A flexible schedule policy often faces communication challenges between the employees and the managers. Take the help of remote communication tools such as video conferencing apps, slack, zoom, skype, etc to stay connected with the employee during flexible hours of working.
Flexi working policy should come up with clear guidelines
Lay down the guidelines and rules in advance regarding the flexible schedule policy to avoid any misunderstandings at a later stage. Methods of tracking the flexible hours, what are the metrics for performance measurement, reporting methods, etc must be pre-defined.
A flexible workforce and constant feedback system
A flexible schedule policy at the workplace often leaves employees feeling lonely and isolated. Employees working flexible hours do not come in regular contact with the other team members. Ensure that they are given constant feedback on their work progress.
What is the core hours policy?
What are core hours? Core hours are the fixed working hours when everyone has to be in the office. Core hours policy at the workplace demands the presence of employees in the office during core hours. The rest of the work can be done during flexible hours.
What are the various types of flexible work schedules?
Let us see the different types of schedule flexibility that can be implemented in the workplace,
- Remote work allows employees to work from anywhere at their convenience.
- A part-time work schedule involves flexible hours for those who cannot work full-time.