Planning is Key to Flexible Work Success

Managers are becoming increasingly aware of the advantages of flexible work options, but reservations regarding decreased productivity or the impact on company culture still hold people back from implementing these programs.

According to an article by Skye Schooley for “Being flexible about when employees start and end their days is becoming an increasingly popular benefit for workers. As a way to maintain a positive work-life balance, many employees place a high priority on flexible work schedules. This is making the traditional 9-to-5 workweek a thing of the past for many companies.”

A little planning in advance of establishing a flexible work program allows managers to monitor performance, track progress and ensure a cohesive work environment no matter the work arrangement.

Address communication
Communication is key regardless of where employees work, but it’s even more crucial for workers when they’re not in the office. Establish clear expectations for phone calls and email responses – when should employees be available?  How quickly are they expected to respond?  What communication procedures are in place to alert others if someone is unavailable?

Maintain productivity
Flexibility has been shown to increase productivity, but if you are implementing a new flexible work program, define measures that will ensure projects are on track.  Consider a shared calendar or task list to guide and analyze progress.

Keep up work culture
Ensure that remote workers or employees with alternate schedules are included in informal activities outside of work.  If dinner celebrations are the norm in your office, mix it up and try coffee or breakfast to accommodate employees who are unavailable at dinner time.

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