The Benefits of Agile Working
27 June 2017
When organisations discuss the opportunity to commit to “agile working”, no doubt the idea of flexitime, hot desking or working from home is what instinctively comes to mind. However, agile working is actually the ability to work in various locations to complete the tasks necessary to your job on any given day. This may be in an office at a desk with your team, in your company breakout area, in a library, in a cafe or at home.
Agile working lends itself to the notion that work is an activity, not a defined place, and therefore can take place in any given location. It is, if you like, a multi-dimensional way of working. It’s less about being hunched over a desk to all hours and more about open-plan offices, collaborative efforts and freedom.
Working practices are becoming much more fluid, thanks to this new generation of Millennial workers who are keen to shed both their desks and the traditional 9 – 5. It marks a significant cultural change as to what employees expect from a company and how businesses choose to operate. Basic technology, such as Skype, email and messenger apps allows for this to happen.
There is no “one size fits all” approach to agile working, as every employee will have different needs, preferences and working methods. This style of working means the removal of traditional ‘success’ measures such as time keeping and attending and focuses purely on outcome and results. Many companies – including large multi-nationals – have taken the approach that they don’t care where the work is done, as long as goals are met and projects are completed.
The Agile Organisation states on its website: “The goal of agile working is to create more responsive, efficient and effective organisations based on more balanced, motivated, innovative and productive teams and individuals – essential ingredients in surviving and thriving in the current economically challenged globalised world.
“Twentieth century methods are no longer sustainable in twenty-first century organisations – as such agile working is no longer a fringe idea but a mainstream concept that no organisation can afford to ignore.”
A report by the Economist Intelligence Unit confirms this, revealing that 90% of senior executive across the world believe that agile working is “critical for business success.” Agile working, therefore, seems to offer a business a real competitive edge, whilst giving staff the work/life balance that they want. It appears that, when employees are given control over their working hours, productivity and creativity actually increases. It creates better work and a better balance.
In my previous blog, I spoke about retaining talent within your business, and agile working is a big part of that, as even the senior end of the market now look towards flexible working opportunities. The traditional, high-pressure 9 to 5 is quickly becoming a thing of the past. Why not play to your employees strengths and utilise their creativity and productivity at its peak?
If you would like to speak to me about recruiting for Director level posts with agile working, I would be delighted to speak with you confidentially. Click here to see my contact details and we can discuss sourcing the very best talent for your business.
Written By Shona Preston