What’s more, social activities tend to be more frequent and kids are also off school. The sun seems to call out to us and the last thing any of us want to do is work the same long hours we’re used during the colder months. The notion of having a flexible work schedule during these 2 or 3 months becomes a desirable aspiration for many.
Moreover, the advantages of fluid working hours have been researched thoroughly and most results come to a similar conclusion; companies that implement effective summer working hours, tend to report more satisfied employees, who are in turn, more productive.
What is Flexible Working?
When considering regular corporate offices, flexible working offers employees the opportunity to work reduced hours or even work remotely, as long as they cover their workload in a timely manner. This is executed without taking from an employee’s vacation days or wages.
Throughout the months of May till August, this style of working becomes more popular in numerous organisations due to the fairer weather, hence the term ‘summer hours’.
Naturally, these may vary from one company to another. Some firms may require individual employees to specifically request flexible hours and undergo a process, while others may have adopted a company-wide policy that is the same for all employees during certain months.
Implementing an Effective Summer Work Schedule
If your company currently doesn’t implement any kind of flexible working schedule, it’s definitely worth some due consideration for all the reasons mentioned above.
You may be unsure of how to actually go about it, so the trick is to start with something simple such as half-days on Fridays or every second Friday. In this way, employees get treated to an early start to their weekend and they will definitely appreciate the company all the more for it.
You could also opt for a half-day on any day of the employee’s choosing, or shorter working days comprising 6 or 7 hours instead of 8, for example. There is a myriad of combinations that are possible so just do your research and see what would work best for your organisation.
Work schedules and tasks should be coordinated between teams and their leaders beforehand to avoid any misunderstandings. Of course, squeezing a 40-hour week into less isn’t always possible; in this case, allowing employees to work from home, for example, would be a good compromise, as commuting time is eliminated.
According to a survey by Opinion Research Corporation, 66% of workers interviewed reported that a flexible working schedule made it possible for them to spend more time with friends and family and to adopt a better work-life balance too.
This should especially be considered by those companies where bonuses are infrequent; non-financial perks sometimes work just as well to give employees that much-needed boost to carry on working. Moreover, the associated costs are minimal when compared with other schemes.
Employees are of course still required to carry out their normal duties but as long as the work gets done, this practice actually works wonders to improve morale amongst the workforce.
Should you decide to embrace the idea of a flexible summer work plan, keep in mind to check in with your employees regularly and seek out feedback as to whether this schedule is working for your business culture and requirements. You may find you need to make certain adjustments until you get it right.