What is flexi-hours, or flexible working?

Whilst flexi-hours, also known as flexi-time or flexible working, has been with us for many years, it is only recently that it has become more popular amongst employees. Flexi-hours enables employees to work their hours around their individual needs and any commitments, such as children, that they may have outside the workplace. There are various forms of flexi-hour working:

  • Adjusting start and finish times around set core hours, i.e. 10am to 4pm.
  • Work from home.
  • Job sharing – splitting a role between two people who share the workload.
  • Part-time working.
  • Annualised hours – a certain number of hours are worked over the year, but flexible hours are worked through that period.
  • Compressed hours – working the same number of hours as, say, a 9–5 but over fewer days.
  • Staggered hours – start and finish times vary.
  • Shift swapping – a group of employees organise a shift programme together, swapping hours with each other to best fit their needs.

The pros and cons of flexi-hours to your business

Flexi-hours can benefit the employer as much as the employee, but there are also disadvantages. For the employee, flexibility allows them to balance their work life with their family and/or personal needs. If working from home, commuting time and cost is reduced. The employee has more control over their time and their working schedule, being able to fit it around their other commitments. However, there are downfalls to working from home, such as a lack of a clear division between work and home, and family members might not be so conducive to you working from home. Other flexi-hour arrangements may cause confusion with staff who are based in the office, and communication can be difficult.

For employers, who are obliged to consider any requests from their staff for flexi-hours, the benefits include reduced employee turnover, less absenteeism and late arrivals, and even a significantly boosted employee morale. For people looking for new jobs, offering flexi-hours improves the company image and gives the tone that the company is a family-friendly place to work. But as for employees, there are also some disadvantages for employers. Some people just don’t suit home working and it can be difficult to supervise their work rate when they’re not in the office; a lot of trust is needed for this form of flexi-hour working. If choosing the compressed work option, the employee’s availability for clients can be compromised. It may also be found that office-based employees will feel some unfairness against flexi-hour employees.

At Atkinson Moss, we can help businesses structure any flexi-hour working, and source flexi-hour roles for people looking for new job roles. We take the time to understand what you’re looking for and carefully match you with the right role. Find out more about jobs in your area by exploring our website today, or call us to discuss your perfect job role.