Companies across the U.S. have launched their return-to-work plans as the pandemic continues to ease due to the rollout of vaccines. While there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to making employees feel safe about coming back, there are a variety of ways employers can help them feel less anxious about the […]
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After almost a year and a half of working from home, many white-collar employees say they are not willing to return to corporate offices full-time. Even whispers of returning have been enough to send some professionals searching for an exit—and plenty of bosses are welcoming them to new jobs with the promise they can work remotely, at least most of the time.
The push for flexibility is adding to the wave of resignations rippling through the U.S., recruiters say. And this motivating many employers to re-evaluate their work-from-home policies. Some are also realizing that remote work is the new signing bonus. Canadian video-software firm Vidyard says it has seen a steep increase in job applications in recent months. This is after emphasizing that roles can be performed mostly at home. And at Allstate Corp. , conversations about every new position now begin with the question: “Why can’t this be done remotely?” says Carrie Blair, the insurance giant’s chief human-resources officer. “It’s a big workforce shift for us.”
75% -24% -1%: Remote Work- Hybrid Model – Onsite
Hardly anyone will return to Allstate’s offices full time, Ms. Blair says, after employees expressed in surveys that they didn’t want to and the company found most functions don’t require an office setting. Allstate recently decided 75% of roles can be performed remotely. And that another 24% can be done on a hybrid basis, with workers splitting time between home and the office. The 1% who will go back to a pre-Covid-style office setting include some top executives and certain people in field offices with customer-facing roles.
Marc Cenedella, founder and chief executive of Ladders, a job-search site for roles that pay north of $100,000 a year, says greater flexibility is shaping up as a perk that companies can wield to poach talented people.
“Remote is going to be the new signing bonus,” he says. “Instead of dangling, ‘We’ll give you $10,000 if you sign for this job.’ It’ll be: ‘Instead of having to commute 35 minutes every day, go to work, and get in your car and drive 35 minutes home, you can work from your home office all the time.’ ”
Higher pay, zero commute and meditation time
Matt Croak, a 27-year-old software engineer in New York City, wasn’t actively looking for a new job earlier this year. But believed his consulting-firm employer could begin reopening its offices this summer in a hybrid capacity. So, when a recruiter reached out in April about an engineering role at an e-commerce company that would allow him to continue working fully from home, he pursued it.
The job comes with higher pay and the chance to learn new skills. But it will also allow him to spend mornings reading in his living room in Brooklyn. That is, instead of been hunched over a subway seat while commuting 45 minutes into Manhattan. Mr. Croak says that, over the past 16 months, he has had more personal time for meditation and other self care—activities. And he wasn’t ready to give up in order to rush back and forth to and from an office again.
“I do really want to work from home permanently,” he says.
Why are they quitting just now and not later?
More American workers are quitting their jobs than at any time in at least 20 years, according to the Labor Department. One factor behind the trend, executives say, is that more employers are outlining their return-to-office plans in detail. And this is giving employees a clearer sense of what to expect next.
- Create a ‘buddy’ system among colleagues.
- Have regular check-ins with team members – for example, politely asking for people to keep video on for some time, to see how well everyone is doing.
- Introduce fun challenges to keep employees motivated – virtual and in-person.
- Audit your own and personnel home workspaces and perhaps, personal circumstance – this can help you to understand what employees need in their home office space to work optimally.
- Allow some flexibility – put in some proper guidelines to guard against abuse.
Self-love is the process of knowing yourself, connecting with your inner self, overcoming self-limiting beliefs, letting go of everything that doesn’t serve you, and falling in love with yourself.
Self-love helps silence the fear of rejection, our inner critic, and instead befriend it to serve us rather than taunt us. And we develop confidence in what we stand for, when we know who we are from within. With self-love, we are able to let go of self-judgment, negative thoughts, opinions, and people who are not aligned with us.
When we accept ourselves wholly for who we are, people around us also start seeing us in the same light. Likewise, when we love what we do and do what we love, we are alive and soaring in all that we do. This further draws others with positive energy to us. Ultimately, that power of love for yourself, will not only elevate your relationship with yourself, but enhance and deepen your relationship with work, family, life, and everything around you.
An agreement on new flexible working rights aimed at giving NHS staff a better work-life balance is announced today (Tuesday) by health unions and NHS employers. The deal will make it easier for workers to request flexible working arrangements. This includes a right to do so from the first day staff are employed in the NHS. […]
This is expected to help the NHS recruit and retain health workers. The agreement comes at a time when many health employers and their staff are beginning to consider new ways of working. The government has already promised a consultation on work flexibility for all UK workplaces.
Poor work-life balance is often given as a key reason for employees wanting to leave the health service. The extra demands of the pandemic have left staff exhausted with many re-evaluating their priorities and considering leaving the NHS.
To tackle this, health unions and NHS employers have agreed several new flexible measures to encourage staff to continue their careers in health. The provisions will apply in England, Scotland and Wales, with similar measures expected to follow in Northern Ireland.
New Contractual Terms
The new contractual terms will allow staff to:
- Request flexible working from the start of their employment (removing the requirement to have six months’ service)
- Make an unlimited number of applications for flexible working, instead of just one a year
- Submit applications without having to justify requests or provide specific reasons
- Access a process where managers must refer on requests that cannot be accommodated initially to ensure all possible solutions are explored.
Employers will be expected to promote flexibility options for all jobs at the recruitment stage and discuss them regularly with all staff in one-to-one meetings, team discussions and appraisals.
Health employers will also work with unions to develop, agree and offer a broader range of flexible working arrangements. In addition, they will monitor and examine what happens to requests made across their organisations.
The word “flexible” is broad, and could mean a flexible location, flexible hours, an ethos of flexibility, and many other things that is peculiar to each organization and employee.
Consider these tips to determine what flexibility means to your workforce so you can make sure that policy changes are relevant. But first, take a step back and look at what workplace flexibility could mean.
What Flexibility Means In 2021
Flextime. This can be remote working and ability to set hours outside of the traditional 9-to-5 timeslot. Or, allowing compressed work schedules, which let employees complete the usual 40 hours in fewer than five workdays.
Location. Ability to work outside of the office, like during the pandemic. Or in a hybrid work environment where employees have control over how many days a week they show up in person.
Reduced schedule. Programs such as job sharing and phased retirement give employees a chance to step back from full-time employment while still working at your organization.
Paid Time Off (PTO). A generous—or even unlimited—amount of paid for time, when employees have the freedom to take (and use) the time they need to be productive (doing work or non work related activity).
Finding Out What Flexibility Means To Your Staff
1. Gather information. Start by conducting a survey to get a sense for what your staff wants out of a flexible workplace. Ask specifically about the above workplace policies, what they’ve liked or haven’t liked about remote work, and how their productivity has been affected since having the freedom that remote work provides.
You can continue the conversation by setting up company town hall meetings, focus groups, or one-on-one discussions to dig deeper into what your staff wants.
2. Consider industry trends. On top of employee preferences, there might be certain flexible work policies that are more relevant to your organization than others. For example, if onsite work is required, you can’t offer remote work but could still opt for flextime.
You can also ask other organizations if they’ve taken steps to make work more flexible for their employees and consider how those policies would apply to your own workforce.
3. Shadow employees and reassess. Once you implement your own brand of workplace flexibility, see how your workforce responds. How has productivity been affected? What is the feeling around the office? Have you noticed any roadblocks that you didn’t consider during your knowledge-gathering stage?
Go to Associations Now to check the following related articles;
- How to do flextime the right way
- Five tactics that will make your workspace more collaborative
- Reentry anxiety may affect return to the office
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Many people have an inaccurate beliefs about their workload. Here are a few pointers to address this.
Work Smarter, Not Harder
Get more done in the same amount of time by learning to work more efficiently. Better manage distractions and attention seeking activities. Learning a comprehensive workflow management system is another way to get more done in less time.
Ultimately your own work-life balance is completely up to you. No one can “give you” better balance. You have to take it.
Stop thinking that other people expect you to be available all the time. Also, trying to conform to the expectations that other people have for you is exhausting and ultimately futile.
You Have a Habit of Distraction
Your most important resources are not your time or your money or even your attention. Your most important resources are your body and your mind.
Manage checking your communication channels during workday every 1-3 minutes. Else, you get conditioned and wont be able to “shut it off,” workday, work week or at your personal time.
You Have Control
Studies show that a boss’s work-life balance is an important factor in the work-life balance of their employees, and that if all better utilize downtimes, everyone will likely to be physically and emotionally healthier.
Recommended: The Third Space according to Adam Fraser is the transitional gap in between what we do. It’s not what we do, it’s what we do in between what we do that is most important.