The times are changing into new norms – the office has been replaced by our homes, meetings with video calls, classrooms with digital learning platforms; so why does the 9-5 shift still remain the norm, even in situations where employees aren’t obligated to face clients or to be present at meetings? As long as all the deadlines are met and the objectives are achieved, is it really necessary to log your shifts with detailed descriptions of daily tasks into the system?
Having strict shifts in situations where the job isn’t about facing clients or providing services doesn’t make a lot of sense, so why do companies still force employees to start their work at the exact same time every day rather than offering a true “gliding schedule”? Does entering workhours into an HR system really prove the person did all the mentioned tasks?
‘Having flexible working hours’ for many companies means starting and ending your day an hour before or after your usual shift, but can this really be considered flexible?
The development of new technology has shown us that it might not be necessary for everyone to work the same 8-hour shifts. As communication is usually done via email, which can have certain level of delay, especially in international companies, working 8 hours straight might not always increase productivity. A true flexible work environment promotes wellness, better time management and increased productivity, as well as a stress-free environment with less distractions and increased employee retention. A study found that employees were 13.5% more productive when working from home.
If employees are happier with their work environment – whether it’s at the office or home, they are more likely to have higher engagement.
We believe that running a team is more than checking on their productivity by the hours they enter into the system. It is important to treat each employee as an individual with their own personal lives which can be improved by letting them choose when to start and end their workday. If the person delivers the expected results, has a good team spirit and shows high engagement, then we believe a flexible schedule with needed breaks is the way to go. This has been our practice also before COVID-19 outbreak, our team members could have working days at home as they wanted and the flexible working hours are something we have been developing best practices for during the past 3 years, yet to be at the office was a prior choice. Now remote work with the flexible hours is becoming a norm we wish to keep, as it makes our team more productive and creates better work/life balance.
If you ever tried a flexible schedule, please share your thoughts on this subject. Is 9-5 still the norm that should be applied to any job description?