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Businesses Can Boost Profits by Catering to Flexible Working Demands

Employers that offer remote working and holiday breaks are more likely to have happier, productive staff, two new reports argue...

Small businesses can no longer afford to ignore demands for flexible and remote working with new research from Regus having found that 92% of UK employees favour jobs that offer flexible working.

The survey of 3,000 professionals, across a variety of sectors, revealed that 33% of employees would have stayed longer at a previous employer if they had been offered flexible working such as the option to work from home and more flexible hours – indicating that flexible working is increasingly key to staff retention.

A recent report from Sandler Training has also argued that employers that are more relaxed about staff taking holidays could actually benefit from a boost to profits in the long-run.

44% of the employees surveyed by Sandler said that having a break ‘recharged their batteries’, while 15% believed it helped relieve feelings of stress – emphasising the importance holiday time can have on making staff more productive.

In contrast, 17% of business owners were found to forgo a vacation themselves while 65% of those business owners that did take holiday admitted to still checking their emails almost four times a day.

Richard Morris, UK CEO of Regus, said of the findings:

“Small businesses must think long and hard about the type of roles that they are offering to today’s professionals. The days of the fixed hours, fixed location job are becoming as outdated as the office fax machine. Flexibility is no longer seen as a perk, it is now a key differentiator for talented individuals.

“There is also the current business climate to consider. The economic uncertainty requires business to be more agile and nimble so operating with a fluid and flexible workforce, using available workspace, makes real commercial sense.

“Put simply, those small businesses not thinking flexibly risk a talent drain.”