Toss the 9-to-5 Concept: Flexible Work Hours are More Effective

Hasibuddin Ahmed

April 18, 2016

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Working flexible hours is something every employee expects or wishes for, with more impact of Millennials in the workplace, the archaic 9-to-5 job might be on the way out. More professionals opt for freelance and self-employment, organizations need to adapt to the changing times to move forward.

Do the traditional fixed working hours are fit for a modern workplace? Does productivity decrease with flexible hours? There are a lot of questions that spring up when we discuss flexible hours. A modern workplace can be highly competitive, the need to focus on results i.e. the end product gives more importance, rather than the route it has taken. It rarely matters if you slogged daily 9-to-5, came on time and did the same work as compared to another who worked flexible hours.

Millennials and the Shift to Flexible Work Hours

Nowadays, the job profiles have become involved, and they define wider areas of responsibilities. Millennials who have just started their career are keen to juggle different responsibilities for fast, professional growth than a steady rise in a single position. This idea made flexible working hours an attractive option to professionals and is one of the decisive factors for joining an organization. According to various reports, flexible working hours is what young professionals look for in an organization; more than a pay hike.

At this point, you may think if the only reason I am advocating for flexible working hours, is to entice young professionals, the answer is no. There’s more.

Why should Organizations go for Flexible Work hours?

Understand that changing policy can be a challenging process at first, with a lot of aspects to be looked after. But after going through the following reasons, one can see that it will be worth experimenting:

- Freedom leads to more responsibility

If an organization thinks that it needs to monitor its employees at all time, then it needs to think again. These are professionals have immense skills and are mature enough to know about their duties and responsibilities. Creating a strict policy is like putting a bell around their neck to know how they are doing their job, this can lead to higher turnover rate, sluggish employees, and an indifferent staff that will do their best to do their least. It needs to let the employees take initiative as they know better how to accomplish their task.

Flexible hours give employees a sense of freedom, which brings in a lot of responsibility. People tend to become aware of what they are doing. Employees understand that their liberty is defined by how responsible they regard their work. It is not that they can get away without doing anything

- Beneficial to working parents

A flexible environment is a dream for working parents. There a lot of changes in the lives of new parents or even those who have toddlers. They have to schedule their lives for new activities: school, illness, and parents meetings. To juggle these with their professional life adds complexity. A hectic schedule is one reason working mothers have to leave their jobs, which creates a gap in a companies production " as they continue to lose brilliant women on a frequent basis. It is better to provide the opportunity to work within a flexible schedule than themgoing through job portal during the work to find a place that suits their need.

If there is flexibility in hours, it provides opportunities to maintain the work-life balance, while the organization can retain their talent. These freedoms put a sense of responsibility in employees as they feel support from their employer.

- Strict hours lead to stress and hence low productivity

Strict hours make the employees feel they are running against the clock. Their world revolves around the tick-tock of a second hand, and after some time of their professional life, they will break down. Their productivity will fail, they will be stressed out and in turn, and their personal life gets ruined. It is a situation where no one is at an advantage. In short, flexible working hours put everyone in a win-win situation with higher productivity and lower employee stress.

- Easier to hire better talent

Flexible hours are a great perk, and it makes the organization one of the popular ones in the industry. The benefit will attract talented professionals, which creates an advantage over its competitors. It is easier to hire through the references of the current employees, and saves resources, and time. If the current employees are happy, they reference their company to other amazing professionals.

Though it is true that flexibility offers advantages, as shown above, the feasibility of it should also be checked before applying. Experimenting and the effectiveness should be measured. If a change in policy hours executes well, there can prove to be highly cost-effective and help in growing the organization.

Author Bio

Hasib is a professional writer working with one of prominent job portals in India As a career coach, he helps people in their professional development. He is an avid reader and lives for two things - football and food. If he is not involved in any of those, you can find him contemplating existential issues. Follow him @ Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn

Opinions expressed by the author are not necessarily those of WITI.

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