Flexibility Matters: Why Flexible Work Schedules Improve Team Spirit
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Today’s workers want more flexible options regarding their work schedules. The good news is flexibility can be advantageous to both employees and employers.
Flexible working not only includes employees having more freedom over the hours they choose to work. It can also include the employees choosing how long they work and where they work. The latter can include remote working or distributed working.
Remote working means employees can work from home or another location besides the workplace. They could work remotely full-time or part-time or mix up their remote work schedules over different periods.
Distributed working is similar, but it involves multiple employees working from different locations. Distributed working is an ideal flexible solution for companies that have several locations across a state or country, or internationally.
Many companies use multiple flexible options, so a hybrid solution could work well. Quite simply, flexibility matters. Employees gain many advantages from a flexible work schedule. Not least, they can improve their team spirit.
So, if you have employees who need to work well together, you will want to consider adopting one or more flexible work schedule options.
Flexible Work Schedules Can Boost Employee Productivity
When employees can choose their work hours, they get to work when they are feeling their best.
For instance, some employees work better in the morning and others in the afternoon. That enables employees to work more productively, be happier in their work, and improve their morale as members of a team.
Flexible schedules do not only involve employees being able to choose the hours they work, though. Various types of flexible work schedules can boost employee productivity and bring about other advantages.
6 Types of Flexible Work Schedules for the Modern Workforce
In addition to staggering hours so that employees can choose a different start and finish time from their colleagues and adopting remote or distributed working solutions, there are many ways in which the modern workforce can work flexibly.
Here are six types of flexible work schedules you will want to consider introducing to your team.
1. Job Sharing
Job sharing involves two people sharing the same role. For instance, one person could work in the morning while another person works in the afternoon or one person could work two days a week while the other works three days a week.
2. Job Splitting
This is similar to job sharing. The key difference is the two employees would carry out different tasks during their allotted schedules. So, the role itself is segmented.
3. Compressed Working
Compressed working involves employees working less than the standard five days of full-time work, such as working four days a week.
4. Annualized Hours
This type of flexible work schedule involves an employee working a set number of hours over a year. The employee would choose when those hours are worked.
5. Unlimited Paid Time Off
Another flexible work option that many employers now utilize is unlimited paid time off. That means employees have an unlimited number of vacation days they can take. However, if you introduce an unlimited paid time off option, you will need to incorporate it with one of the other flexible work schedule options.
6. Reduced Retirement
When employees approach retirement age, they could utilize the reduced retirement option. That means workers who are nearing the end of their careers can choose the amount of work they do instead of leaving the organization they work for completely.
The Advantages of Flexible Work Schedules for Improving Team Spirit
We have seen how productivity can be boosted by introducing flexible work schedules and how, in turn, that can improve employees’ team spirit. But there are various other advantages of flexible work schedules, each of which can play a part in bettering team spirit.
Flexible Work Schedules Can Reduce Employee Turnover
When employees have flexible work options, they will gain a better work/life balance. In turn, that means they become happier. That not only improves productivity and enhances team spirit. It also means employee retention can be kept high and employee turnover can be kept low.
When employee turnover is reduced, it means teams are not continually having to change how they work together.
Team Members Can Be Less Stressed
Employees who work with flexible schedules can be less stressed because they do not always have to worry about getting to work by a designated time.
They can avoid the stresses of commuting during rush hour or dealing with family problems that are preventing them from getting out the door.
In turn, they can be happier, be more focused on their work, and have a better team spirit.
However, be aware that remote working can still cause employees to burnout sometimes. So, utilize methods to stop that from happening.
Employees Can Feel Empowered
Employees on a flexible schedule can feel more empowered than employees who work set hours every week.
When employees have an increased feeling of personal control over their schedules and their work environment, they can become better workers and gain improved team spirit. Having control over break times also enables employees to feel more empowered.
Employees Can Gain Greater Control Over Family Commitments
A flexible schedule could decrease an employee’s need for childcare and reduce the cost of childcare. An employee would have greater control over other family commitments too, such as needing to take time off to attend a school play or to be at home when the children are sick.
With greater control over family commitments, an employee can gain a better work/life balance and be more focused at work. Of course, that, in turn, enables an employee to be a committed member of a team and contribute to the overall team spirit.
Employees Can Sometimes Put Their Personal Needs First
Having the option to occasionally put personal needs before work can help employees to be happier in general, including while at work.
It is not only childcare and other family obligations that can be put first. Employees on flexible work schedules can also make the most of their social lives or workout routines, for example.
When workers are able to sometimes put their personal needs first, they will be happier and more committed at work, and thus become better team players.
Employees Can Pursue Passions Outside of Work
Similarly, employees on flexible schedules can pursue more of their passions outside of work and in turn be happier and more productive at work.
When an employee has a passion that does not fit into a nine-to-five schedule, such as attending a creative English course, he or she could resent the workplace if flexible scheduling is not an option.
On the other hand, when flexible schedules enable employees to pursue their passions, they will be happier and more inspired, and ready to contribute to a good team spirit at work.
You Can Hire and Retain Top Talent
As mentioned in the introduction, the modern workforce wants more flexible options. Employees also want more inclusion, purpose, and growth opportunities.
By ensuring your company provides such options, you can make sure you hire and retain top talent; and when you have a happy and committed workforce, the team spirit among workers is sure to become improved.
Do not overlook how important things like flexibility, inclusion, purpose, and growth are to the modern workforce.
Indeed, many prospective employees now actively find out what a company’s policy is regarding such things before they apply for positions.
For instance, if someone wants to determine whether a prospective company offers flexible work schedules, they can use an employer review platform like JobSage.
Flexibility can be much more than simply giving employees more freedom over the hours they work.
It can involve remote working and distributed working options as well as flexible work schedules like job sharing, job splitting, compressed working, annualized hours, unlimited paid time off, and reduced retirement.
You should spend time looking at which types of flexible work schedules would work well for your company. You need to consider how flexible schedules can benefit both your company and your employees.
One advantage of flexible work options that benefits both the employees and the employer is that of improved team spirit.
To recap, workers can be happier, more focused, and more inspired when working with their colleagues because:
- Flexible work schedules can reduce employee turnover and thereby ensure teams are not continually having to change how they work together.
- Employees can be less stressed due to not having to worry about things like getting to work by a designated time.
- Employees can feel more empowered by having greater control over their schedules.
- Employees can gain greater control over their family commitments, such as being able to attend their children’s school play.
- Employees can put their personal needs first, which enables them to gain a greater work/life balance and be happier and more productive at the workplace.
- Employees can pursue their passions outside of work, such as attending an educational course or playing a sport.
- Top talent can be retained more easily.
Putting that all together, flexible work schedules enable employees to be happier, more focused, and more inspired at work. In turn, that allows them to improve their individual performance and also lift the spirits of their colleagues.
Ultimately, flexible work schedules can significantly improve team spirit.