Flexible working relates to an organisation’s working arrangements in terms of the time, location and pattern of working. With more and more people thinking differently about how, when and where they work, flexible working is increasingly helping people access the labour market and stay in work. Quality flexible working can help organisations attract talent, improve employee job satisfaction and loyalty, reduce absenteeism, and improve well-being; it can also make businesses more responsive to change. In this section, we provide evidence-based practical guidance, tools and information to help you effectively implement flexible working in your organisation.
In this video, we ask people from across the profession what flexible working means to them on both a personal and professional level.
Access the video transcript
Flexible working for me, means working how I want, when I want with who I want and for as long as I want.
It's just taking that slightly different attitude that I might need that bit of flexibility as an employee.
It's not about presentism, it’s not about what time you turn up at work and what time you finish.
Allowing people the flexibility to work from home, work different hours.
I can work when I want to work.
Flexible working is really about trust from your employer, and it’s about give and take.
Giving them the ability to really be at the optimum and different times of the day. I guess people will always think the typical 9-5 is the optimum when that that necessarily not be the case.
I can fit my family needs in, my social needs, my sporting activities. I can still do them and fulfil my work and my job.
Work is part of people's life, not their whole life, and they have other things going on as well.
It's a smarter way to work.
So many people work extra hours and don't take it back.
So I think it's about saying I will do the work I need as long as I have the flexibility to go to doctor's appointments.
Working around family and friends, move house, things like that, that are really important and makes you feel very valued that fact you got that give and take between you.
And in turn you're getting a more engaged workforce.
And that's it, it’s no more complicated than that, it's as simple as that and as easy as that, how it should be.
Understand the legal and practical considerations that are involved in introducing staggered shifts or working hours
Use this guide to plan your flexible working approach in the short and long term following the COVID-19 pandemic
Policy and engagement
This report looks at recent trends in flexible working, and since we have to set boundaries around the analysis, we’ve concentrated on trends in when and where work is done
Observations from a focus group meeting of diversity experts on the challenges facing employers in progressing the uptake and use of flexible working
Calls for employers to recognise the business case for increasing flexible working, which can be a win–win for both the organisation and the individual
Episode 146: We explore The Flexible Working Taskforce and the CIPD's new investigation into flexible working
Episode 99: From 5 April 2015, shared parental leave comes into effect. This episode looks at the implications of this change for businesses and their employees, and questions if this new legislation goes far enough
Episode 75: Soon all employees will have the right to request flexible working arrangements. This episode looks at the implications for business, HR and society in general.
Qualifying for flexible working requests
Support from HR-inform
You can find further resources on the HR-inform website, including:
- template letters to respond to flexible working requests and arrange trial periods
- checklists to manage and support flexible workers
- employment law information outlining the latest legislation relating to flexible working.