This week (7th-11th October) is National Work Life Week, which aims to give employers and workers alike the opportunity to focus on wellbeing at work, with individuals in HR and charities calling for more flexible working to be implemented to boost wellbeing.
Megan Barbier, vice-president of HR at Wrike, a collaborative work management platform believes attention should be focused on flexible working and collaborative technology in order to boost the message of this week.
Ms Barbier said:
In today’s business environment, for many employees the ability to work flexibly is a high priority. It’s equally important to them to be able to switch off outside of working hours. Therefore, the companies that allow remote work and flexible schedules, and have the technology in place that supports these options will be more appealing.
Businesses need to make sure that their technology is empowering their workforce – rather than being another distraction or burden, causing increased stress levels or even burnout. Technology should encourage flexibility and allow employees to disconnect – not promote a 24/7 workday.
Our research has shown that collaboration technology, like Collaborative Work Management (CWM) tools, can save employees from burning out by giving them control over their workload. When asked, 91 per cent of UK respondents said these tools help them to switch off and create a better work-life balance.
Fegans, a charity that champions mental health and supports children also back the idea of flexible working and asks all employers to consider the benefits of flexible working for their staff.
Ian Soars CEO at Fegans said:
At Fegans we have a strong culture of flexible working. In fact over 95 per cent of our staff are highly-valued part time members of staff and many are in term-time only roles. They organise their working hours around childcare and family responsibilities, sometimes working from our offices and sometimes at home, thanks to technology.
I have long believed in the huge returns flexible working brings to both employee and employer in terms of morale, retention and commitment. Our staff know they are valued and trusted and that their personal wellbeing is important to us.
Also, research conducted by Boundless, a public sector membership club found that 52 per cent of workers would be happier if they were thanked by their boss for their job. However, a higher salary did come out as top priority at 67 per cent, but Boundless believe their research suggests “a work-life balance and greater appreciation for the job they do are vitally important to happiness in the workplace.”
Just under a quarter (23 per cent) said they would like to work more sociable hours, this number increased to 27 per cent for NHS workers and 41 per cent for police officers.
Darren Milton, Boundless spokesperson said:
Of course money plays an important part in job satisfaction but in National Work Life Week we should really be considering what other issues need to be tackled to keep people happy at work.
Working more sociable hours and having a better work-life balance is clearly important to people, judging by our survey.