Having looked at the findings of our recent flexible working report, I wanted to say a few words about why it’s so important to me personally, and what we’re doing here at Hydrogen to provide our people with the best possible working environment.
Flexible working practices aren't that common in the recruitment industry and other sales-led organisations. Yet given the conclusive evidence of its benefits, particularly in attracting and retaining the best talent, we have made it a top priority.
So, what have we been doing to improve our working environment? Well, some of our people are on short weeks and limited hours and since the summer we've been conducting a trial in our London office which allows for all our staff to have flexible start and finish times. Although we are still at an early stage of implementation, all the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.
Fostering a culture of trust
Naturally one of the biggest challenges lies around trust and once you have that culture of trust then it makes everything a lot easier. That’s what we’re trying to achieve here – we trust our people and managers to make the right decisions.
And for a global company such as Hydrogen, our people work across multiple time zones, so we need to remove any barriers and allow them to do their jobs in the best possible way. We also need to increasingly cater for the tech savvy millennial – with half of all employees being in this demographic group by 2020, the importance of flexible working will only increase.
Flexible working – top tips
I’ll leave you with some key takeaways from the report and what you can do to improve your flexible working practices.
- Employer of choice – to gain an edge over the competition, you must embrace flexible working, so it’s imperative that you look at your current flexible working set-up and see how you can narrow the gap between what you have and what your people would like.
- Promote, promote, promote – we found that there is a dichotomy between what employers think about flexible working in their organisation and the actual reality from the employee’s side. Line managers need to be educated about the benefits of flexible working; you can also, for example, run some trials to see how folks adapt and what they think.
- Communication let me down – as the Spandau Ballet lyrics remind us, if you’re not spreading the flexible working message, then you’re missing a trick. Think about your job ads, job specs and websites for prospective candidates, otherwise you’re going to be too late to the party. The same applies internally so update your intranet, include FAQs etc.
We’re pleased with the direction in which we’re heading at Hydrogen. It’s only the start but we are excited at what’s to come. I look forward to hearing more about what’s worked for you, what you've learnt and the pitfalls to avoid, so please leave your comments and do get in touch.
If you’re interested in joining our team at Hydrogen, please check out ourFacebook page for all our current vacancies or email firstname.lastname@example.org both full and part-time positions.