These include opening up your talent pool to a wider, more diverse range of candidates beyond geographical limitations, and to those with caring responsibilities. Flexible working has also shown an increase in employee satisfaction and wellbeing, alongside work-life balance.
Different demographics have shown a positive response to flexible working, which can benefit:
- Generational diversity: 92% of Millennials identify flexibility as a top priority when job hunting. Gen Z are also prioritising flexibility, with mental health being a leading driver of this preference.
- Gender diversity: Women are more likely to be responsible for domestic workloads (15hrs a week more) and caring responsibilities. Nearly half of working-age women are providing an average of 45 hours of unpaid care every week, while 25% of men provide 17 hours.
- Disabled people: It can be easier for those who struggle to travel to work remotely. Additionally, some neurodiverse people may benefit from working at different times and in different locations.
The flexibility that comes with remote work has been beneficial for inclusion of groups such as women, or individuals with disabilities. The future of remote work must be carefully considered to ensure there is equal inclusion of those both in the office or working from home.
Manage the risks
An important risk to mitigate with increased levels of flexible working is promotion inequity. It’s crucial to review your promotion process with an inclusion lens to identify and gaps and ensure it meets best practice requirements. Ensure all managers have completed unconscious bias training, and flag to them that there may be a higher risk of proximity bias in a post-pandemic world. Review any competency frameworks or tools that employees are assessed by to remove or update criteria which could be hindered by flexible working.
Be transparent about your flexible working
Included is pleased to share that WorkYourWay, the UK’s leading flexible jobs marketplace has re-launched! WorkYourWay is the only platform that allows candidates to search for roles by 20+ different types of flexible working. WorkYourWay also allows companies to outwardly publicise their approach to flexible working, helps reduce their cost of recruiting and increases the diversity of their workforce. If you’re a company, and interested in using the platform, register your interest.