Last week, I wrote about the impact the pandemic has had on people’s attitudes towards work/life balance and the knock-on effects on recruitment and retention.
There is, I believe, a strong link between the Great Resignation and something we’ve known for a long time about motivation and employee engagement; money lacks the power of intrinsic motivators like job satisfaction, being appreciated and having autonomy. (Notice how that last one links directly to trust, which I’ve mentioned so often when talking about hybrid working.)
So, you might be interested to know how, as a team, we’ve responded to those same challenges that organisations around the world have faced.
We’d already introduced flexible working (between 8:00am and 6:00pm) for the whole team, with the option for the office staff to work from home, but towards the end of last year, and partly to manage costs, we decided to go a step further and introduce a 32-hour working week.
The change has proven popular and in August 2021, again after consultation, it became permanent. From September 2021, the team will be working a 32-hour week but earning what they were when working 35-hours.
In hard business terms that represents a 9.4% increase in the hourly rate we pay but in reality, it’s cost us nothing and if I’m honest, the team doesn’t feel any less productive than it was a year ago.
So, what do the team think of the changes now that we’ve had them in place for close to a year? Here’s what they say:
“It gives me greater flexibility to complete non work tasks during the week when required rather than having to ‘rush’ at lunchtime to do these things and come back to work without having time to eat lunch.”
“Everyone has times of the day when they ‘work better’. Letting staff discover this and work during those hours can only benefit everyone.”
“It helps me keep my holidays for actual holidays, and recuperate, which benefits me and Glasstap. The flexibility also enables me to be in the office when customers need me; very handy for overseas customers.”
“Having the choice of office or home working suits me. I don’t want to work from home; I like to keep home and work separate and like the routine of leaving home.”
“Being able to work your hours for the week in a way that allows you an afternoon, or even a whole day off, is great for work/life balance. This is good for the company as a happy, healthy workforce is a more productive one.”
“Having the option of working from home has been a godsend for me personally with Covid and my current health issues. Being able to continue working whilst staying safely distanced or staying at home when I’m having a ‘bad day’ health wise (but not too unwell to work), has been invaluable to me. And being able to work whilst isolating before my upcoming operation is great too.”
“Everyone’s circumstances are different and if organisations are able to be flexible to accommodate their employees’ needs as much as possible it increases employee engagement, motivation and a willingness to go the extra mile.”
The way we work at Glasstap won’t suit every organisation. Nevertheless, with resignations at an all-time high, I think it illustrates how a change of mindset, hybrid working and more awareness of employee’s need for work/life balance might help, not just retention, but employee engagement and motivation too.
Co-founder and Commercial Director at Glasstap® (www.glasstap.com), the company behind Trainers' Library® (www.trainerslibrary.com) a service relied on by trainers in more than 40 countries, I retain overall responsiblity for the...