News Article


Should benefits packages include flexible working?

The UK is beginning to recover from what has been a very uncertain time, however, it has also resulted in many businesses having to re-think what they offer new and current employees.

As many have worked from home, the prospect of returning to full time at an office is not quite as appealing as it once was. The flexibility of working from home is a lot more attractive and this is something organisations are capitalising on.

What is flexible working?

Flexible working is not just working from home, it can include; job sharing, shorter hours and working from another venue (for example, a remote office).

Some businesses offer ‘flexible benefits’ which itself means employees are able to ‘pick and choose’ what they wish to benefit from. This differs to simple flexible working as often, the employee is required to contribute to the cost of the package (through tax) on options such as private healthcare, dental, gym memberships and transportation.

What are the advantages of offering flexible working?

Owing to the pandemic, more employees prefer to work from home, as it allows them the flexibility to pick up children from school, go to appointments and takes away the stress of commuting.

Offering flexible working as part of the role will likely attract a larger pool of talent that want to work for you. It will also improve employee retention with your current workforce.

By allowing your employees more choice on the hours they work, some businesses may be able to open earlier and close later as a result. This in turn will benefit your clients who may want to work with you out of the ‘normal’ 9-5 hours.

Those who rent their offices may profit from employees working from home and reduce the amount of utilities that are used monthly.

What if I want to introduce flexible working packages?

It is important for all employees to know what is acceptable when it comes to flexible working. Introducing a signed policy will help to communicate this and will allow you to lay out when it is not possible to work from home, for example, if all are needed to attend a meeting once a month. It may not be possible for certain roles to work from home and this will also need to be outlined to avoid any confusion and conflict.

You may need to provide appropriate equipment and software (if you have not already) to allow employees to work remotely if this is allowed.

Finally, ensure that all senior members of staff are suitably trained for the changes that flexible working will bring including; remote meetings, performance reviews and communication of objectives.

At SFB Consulting, we are experienced in assisting businesses put in place the appropriate policies and training to introduce new benefits packages to employees.

Should you need assistance with the above, we are happy to help. Just call us on 01279 874676 to discuss further.