A Different View on Flexible Working

19th October 2017
Computer and Coffee in Office

For many employers looking to lower their recruitment costs, offering flexible working is a great perk to consider in order to entice top talent to their teams quickly and efficiently. As employees, lots of us want it, far more than have access to it and it’s a top rated perk for many. 

An interesting read by the CIPD however looks at a different side to being offered flexible working and addresses the concerns of some about it. We discuss below: 

Will Flexible Working Harm My Career Prospects? 

This is the main concern to come out of a recent survey where 66% of respondents believed that flexible working would prevent them from climbing the career ladder.  

However, despite these concerns 83% of almost 5,500 professionals surveyed believed it to still be very important.  

Results from those that have implemented flexible working practices also look positive - it was also reported that female representation in senior roles had increased as a result of their flexible working policies. 

What the Experts Say

Dr Jill Miller, diversity and inclusion adviser at the CIPD, added:  

“Visible role models, across genders, can help to shift perceptions that flexible working and career progression aren’t compatible, and the traditional assumptions of why people work flexibly. People require flexible working for a whole host of reasons, and we need to think more creatively about where and when people work to get the best from the talented people we’ve invested in and developed.” 

It’s certainly an interesting and important point to consider that employees fear and anticipate a negative indirect effect of flexible working on their career prospects. However it seems this should be an easy thing to fix with good communication in place. 

We’re still in a candidate driven market and flexible working is a benefit huge numbers of employees are looking for. It’s still finding its feet in practice but the results look extremely positive so far.

It’s certainly an interesting and important point to consider that employees fear and anticipate a negative indirect effect of flexible working on their career prospects.