Tag Archives: Flexitime

Working time flexibility and autonomy: Facilitating time adequacy? A European perspective – Lott

This study argues that flexible working arrangements will have different outcomes based on gender.

The author demonstrates that working time flexibility and autonomy improve time adequacy for women. However, men tend to experience overtime and work intensification in connection with working time autonomy.

Lott, Yvonne (2014) “Working time flexibility and autonomy: Facilitating time adequacy? A European perspective” Institute of Economic and Social Research (WSI) Diskussionspapier 188, Hans-Böckler-Foundation, Düsseldorf

Available at: http://www.boeckler.de/pdf/p_wsi_disp_190.pdf

The Fourth Work-Life Balance Employee Survey – Tipping et al.

This wide ranging survey for the UK Government’s Department of Business, Innovation and Skills explore work-life balance and flexible working arrangements in the UK.

Key findings include:

  • Flexitime, working from home and part-time working were the forms of flexible working most commonly taken up by employees.
  • 90% of employees agreed that having more choice in working arrangements improves morale
  • 35% of employees felt that people who work flexibly create more work for others
  • The availability of flexible working was important for 41% of employees when they made their decision to work for their current employer.
  • Those with flexible working arrangements were more likely to work long hours, suggesting that such practices facilitate greater labour market involvement.

Tipping, Sarah; Chanfreau, Jenny; Perry, Jane; Tait, Claire (2012) The Fourth Work-Life Balance Employee Survey, Employment Relations Research Series 122, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

Available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/32153/12-p151-fourth-work-life-balance-employee-survey.pdf

Flexible Working and Couples’ Coordination of Time Schedules – Bryan & Sanz

Drawing on UK data, the authors demonstrate that for couples who both enjoy flexible working schedules is greater spouse synchronization in daily working times by nearly one hour. They argue that the expansion of flexitime would increase couples’ work time coordination.

Bryan, Mark; Sanz, Almudena (2014) Flexible Working and Couples’ Coordination of Time Schedules, Discussion Paper 8304, IZA

Available at: http://www.iza.org/en/webcontent/publications/papers/viewAbstract?dp_id=8304

Family-related working schedule flexibility across Europe #6 – Präg & Mills

Using the European Labour Force Survey, this report notes wide variation in working schedule flexibility across Europe – from 10% in Romania, to over 60% in the Netherlands and the UK. They argue that GDP per capita is a major predictor of the availability of work schedule flexibility.

They also analysed which social groups report the availability of flexible working. Women and young people reported less access to working schedule flexibility, while those aged over 60 reported greater access. Those with supervisory responsibility, higher-levels of education or with employment permanent contracts were more likely to report the availability of flexible working that their counterparts.

Präg, Patrick; Mills, Melinda (2014) Family-Related Working Schedule Flexibility Across Europe #6, Prepared for European Commission Directorate Justice and Fundamental Rights

Available at: http://ec.europa.eu/justice/gender-equality/files/documents/140502_gender_equality_workforce_ssr6_en.pdf

The economics of temporal and locational flexibility of work – Possenriede

Using Dutch panel data, the author argues that flexitime increases work-life balance and job satisfaction. However, teleworking improves only job satisfaction, and part-time only working-time fit.

The author also finds that remote working may harm careers since fewer promotions and employer-paid trainings are awarded to regular teleworkers. In their analysis of absenteeism, they demonstrate that schedule and location flexibility decrease the frequency and length of sickness absences.

Possenriede, Daniel (2014) The Economics of Temporal and Locational Flexibility of Work, Ph.D Thesis, Universiteit Utrecht

Available at: http://www.uu.nl/faculty/leg/EN/current/events/Pages/d-possenriede.aspx

Working Time Autonomy and Time Adequacy: What if performance is all that counts? – Lott

This report consider time adequacy, that is, the fit between working time and all other time demands.

It demonstrates that working time flexibility and autonomy are positively associated with time adequacy. Performance-related payments and target setting are each associated with employees experiencing time squeeze. Moreover, the author argues that performance-related pay undermines the positive effect of working time autonomy.

Lott, Yvonne (2014) “Working Time Autonomy and Time Adequacy: What if performance is all that counts?” Institute of Economic and Social Research (WSI) Diskussionspapier 188, Hans-Böckler-Foundation, Düsseldorf

Available at: http://www.boeckler.de/pdf/p_wsi_disp_188.pdf

Flexible Work Schedules: What Are We Trading Off to Get Them – Golden

Golden notes that distribution of flexible schedules among workers is quite uneven. It will depends on demographic and job characteristics of workers, including gender, race, education level, occupation, employment, and usual work hours.

Access to flexible working remains uneven by sector and is not equally shared across individuals. It is less likely for nonwhites, women, unmarried persons, those with relatively less education, and those employed in the public sector. It is higher in many of the occupations and industries with generally higher skills and lower unemployment.

Golden, Lonnie (2001) “Flexible Work Schedules: What Are We Trading Off to Get Them” Monthly Labor Review, March

Available at: http://heinonline.org/HOL/LandingPage?handle=hein.journals/month124&div=27&id=&page=

Work Without End? Scheduling Flexibility and Work-to-Family Conflict Among Stockbrokers – Blair-Loy

Blair-Loy demonstrates that, contrary to what might be expected, for workers in certain sectors, rigidity in work schedules can decrease work-family conflict.

She suggests that rigid scheduling protects these employees from pressures of a ‘24-hour economy’. Where client demands and other work could ‘invade every block of time’, flexible working in these cases allows for the extension of work into all aspects of life, and thus promotes work-family conflict.

Blair-Loy, Mary (2009) “Work Without End? Scheduling Flexibility and Work-to-Family Conflict Among Stockbrokers” Work & Occupations, 36(4)

Available at: http://wox.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/36/4/279

Zero hour contracts are ‘tip of the iceberg’ of damaging shift work, say researchers – University of Cambridge

Reporting on new research from the University of Cambridge, this article suggests that zero hour contracts and other modes of flexible working are abused by managers, and are leading to insecurity, anxiety and stress.

Whereas flexible working is often heralded as helping employees, the report’s authors argue it is being subverted to suit employers and is causing suffering to many workers who need to be available at short notice while often not working enough hours to earn a living wage.

They suggest that employees should be granted the statutory right to work additional core hours and have a say in the scheduling of their hours.

Read more here.

New Research: Flexibility Versus Face Time – HBR Blog

As companies such as Yahoo! and Best Buy have rescinded flexible working programmes new research has looked at the experiences of flexible working from the perspective of MBA graduates.

Most reported at least some flexibility in their workplace and this was used equally by male and female respondents. Women, however, were more likely to be remote workers whereas men were more likely to use flexible working hours within their regular workplaces.

The survey also found that a lack of flexibility would damage the career aspirations of ‘high potential employees’. This particularly impacted female workers who, in workplaces with little or no flexible working, would be less likely to go after ‘stretch assignments and promotions’.

Read more on the HBR Blog.