According to new research released by WorldatWork and FlexJobs, while many managers in the United States still find it difficult to estimate the productivity of teleworking employees, 48 per cent believe teleworkers are equally as productive as in-office employees.
By far, the most prevalent flexibility programs offered are telework days on an ad-hoc basis, flex time, part-time work, job sharing and phased return from leave. From 2011 to 2015, flexibility programs have varied according to the type of program offered and the organization ’s demographics, industry and culture. Additionally, 41 per cent of those surveyed reported that access to flexible work arrangements is not widespread to all employees. Frequently, only a small portion of managers (42 per cent) accept the idea that flexibility is an essential element to organizational success.
And, according to the survey, just three per cent of organizations attempt to quantify the return on investment (ROI) of flexibility programs by measuring productivity, employee engagement and performance ratings.
”The popularity of telecommuting matches what we're seeing at FlexJobs, in terms of what job seekers are most interested in when it comes to flexible jobs,” said Sara Sutton Fell, founder and CEO of FlexJobs and 1 Million for Work Flexibility. ”Professionals view working from home, whether occasionally or all the time, as a valuable method for increasing their own productivity, better balancing their responsibilities, and finding a greater sense of control and happiness at work and at home. The great news for companies is that all flexible work, telework included, offers huge benefits for them as well, because it supports both business objectives and the bottom line. ”
Other highlights from this year’s survey include:
- More than two-thirds of managers (67 per cent) offer flexibility to all or most of their employees at their own discretion.
- Two-thirds of organizations (66 per cent) cover the purchase of laptops for their teleworkers, by far the most provided expense.
- Forty-four per cent of organizations do not feature or market flexibility as a key employee benefit when attempting to attract new employees.