96% of employers now offer flexi time according to new research

Since flexible working was first introduced nearly ten years ago, only a small minority of employers have had problems complying with regulations surrounding flexible working arrangements. Research carried out by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development has found that 96% of employers provide some sort of flexible working to their employees and that it benefits both of them.

Nearly two thirds of employers think that flexible working helps with recruiting staff and a half of the employers surveyed thought that it reduced absence and enhanced productivity. Over two thirds thought that it was an aid to employee retention and motivation.

The most common types of flexible working are part-time with 32%, flexi-time with 25%, home workers with 20% and mobile workers 14%. Less common are job share, school term-time workers and compressed hours workers. Large and medium sized companies have less flexi-workers, percentage wise, than small companies.

The Head of Public Policy at the CIPD, Ben Willmott, said that fears raised a decade ago about flexible working had on the whole proved to be groundless no matter what the size of the company. The CIPD wants more extensions to the rights of employees with regards to flexible working although some people claim this will just add more burdens to businesses. The CIPD say the Government should go ahead with the extensions proposed.

The CIPD say that the smaller firms manage their flexible working arrangements less formally than larger firms. Although by necessity, larger firms need a proper HR support system in place and need to have more formal policies due to the number of employees they may have working for them.

The research found that employees who were happy with their work/life balance were more productive, more engaged and under less stress. This showed, as well, in the results of industrial tribunals generated by flexible working problems. Most of the disputes were settled either privately between the two parties, by ACAS or were withdrawn altogether. The CIPD are sure that the new extensions will have no adverse effects on businesses.