New research from Microsoft reveals that despite high levels of favourability for flexible working, uptake of the legislation has been slow.
Over a fifth of small and medium business workers have requested flexible working as a direct result of the law. However they are being thwarted by the fact that despite the legislation, a significant portion of British office workers (55 per cent) are still required by employers to work from the office within designated working hours, says Microsoft.
“Business leaders should reimagine how workers operate. According to the Office of National Statistics, productivity levels in the UK are stagnant and lower than the start of the recession in 2007. There’s never been a better time to change since there’s a risk that firms are cultivating an environment that traps staff in process and red-tape instead of giving them the opportunity to think and have the necessary head-space to be creative,” said Dave Coplin, Chief Envisioning Officer at Microsoft UK.
“Only 11 per cent of employees feel like they have good ideas in the office, and many spend the day doing administrative orientated tasks like trying to achieve ‘inbox-zero’.
“Instead of automatically assuming that work can only happen in the office, employers should focus on the work at hand, where it makes the most sense to complete it and then give employees the freedom and tools to empower them to be productive anytime, anywhere.”
The research shows high support amongst those that have taken advantage of flexible working with many pointing to benefits in their lives, in and out of work.
35 per cent said it makes them more motivated, with a similar number also stating it makes them more productive. Over half also said that flexible working makes their work/life balance easier to manage.
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