6 Benefits of Flexibility in Business

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published March 15, 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Workplace flexibility involves adapting to changing circumstances and expectations on the job. It requires the willingness of both the employers and employees to be open-minded and willing to change how work gets done. Understanding flexibility in business can enhance your workplace experience and optimize productivity. In this article, we discuss the components of business flexibility, describe why it is important in the workplace and explore the benefits of utilizing flexible arrangements.

What is flexibility in business?

Flexibility in business is when the quality of work takes priority over when and where employees complete their work.

There are two types of flexibility in business:

  • Employee flexibility: This involves employees who adapt their role based on the needs of the company, which includes things like adjusting their hours, switching to a work-from-home position, or staying late to help a coworker with a project.

  • Employer flexibility: This involves members of leadership who let their employees have freedom while they work, like to choose their schedules, have a relaxed dress code or select their own projects.

Read more: Workplace Flexibility (Definitions and Types)

Examples of business flexibility

Some examples of practicing flexibility in the workplace include:

Dress code

One way that businesses offer flexibility is through a more laid back dress code. Companies may allow their employees to wear jeans, sweatshirts or other casual wear. Having a more relaxed dress code benefits employees by providing them more comfort in wearing the clothes they want and giving them more freedom to express their individuality.

Autonomy over assignments

Employee autonomy refers to giving employees freedom to decide when, where and how to work. Having autonomy over assignments may also teach employees how to take initiative and improve leadership skills since they have the drive and motivation to complete projects on their own.

Work location

Many companies practice flexibility by letting their employees choose if they would like to work remotely or in the office. There are many benefits for employees to work remotely, like reducing money spent on lunch or wardrobe and a reduction in commuting time, while a benefit for employers includes cutting back on office space.

Time off flexibility

Flexible businesses usually offer flexible or unlimited paid time off (PTO) to their employees.

  • Flexible PTO: This involves allowing employees to choose when they use their time off. They may use their PTO hours for sick or vacation days.

  • Unlimited PTO: This is when employees can decide the amount of time they want off without consequence.

Why is flexibility important in the workplace?

Here are a few reasons flexibility is important in the workplace:

  • Flexibility in business is important because it makes employees feel more valued while building trust and fostering a more creative working environment.

  • Employees who feel appreciated at their job perform to their full potential.

  • It encourages autonomy by allowing employees to choose things like their schedules, projects and work location.

  • Workplace flexibility offers incentives that are exciting to employees which motivates them and boosts morale.

  • Offering a flexible work arrangement allows a better work-life balance and alleviates stress off of employees.

6 benefits of flexibility in business

Here is a list of benefits that employers can expect from adopting flexibility in the workplace:

Lowers stress

Flexibility in the workplace lowers stress because of the laid-back atmosphere that flexibility generates. For example, giving employees the freedom to choose their own schedule takes the pressure off of their workday. Employees who work a more flexible schedule often experience less stress since they are in control of their time. They no longer have to worry about arriving to work late, dealing with traffic during their commute and waking up at an early hour in the morning.

Improves productivity

Lowering employee stress levels and offering flexible benefits increases productivity. Allowing employees to work remotely means they will be less likely to take days off from work, which boosts company production.

Employees who have more control over their tasks may want to finish their projects because they are more creatively fulfilled and well-trusted by their managers.

Employee loyalty

Companies that offer incentives like unlimited paid time off and work-from-home opportunities to their employees show that they deeply care for their employees and are more likely to have less employee turnover. Employees who enjoy their company's flexibility may also share with others about the company and refer their contacts to apply.

Builds trust

Workplace flexibility builds trust by calling for employers to trust that their employees can finish their work accurately and independently. It is essential to have trust between an employer and employee because they often depend on each other for help. Having a trusting work relationship is beneficial because it makes employees feel trusted with responsibility, depended on and supported, which can enable them to become more involved in the company. Employees may also grow in confidence knowing that their employers trust them to perform their job well.

More independence

Workplace flexibility involves allowing employees to have control over their projects and schedule, which provides them with freedom and authority over their work.

For example, flexible employers may give their employees the expectation to complete one project per day, ensuring employees have the tools they need to complete these projects, such as software or online resources, then they let employees work on their own time.

Work-life balance

Flexibility in business allows for a better work-life balance since employers trust their employees to create and maintain their own schedules. Having a greater amount of quality time set aside for family, friends and hobbies gives employees the benefit of returning to work feeling refreshed and ready to take on more projects.

For example, if an employee needs to pick up their kids from school or if they have a doctor's appointment to attend, they don't have to use sick time. Employees can focus equally on their work and personal responsibilities, which lowers their chance of becoming overwhelmed, showing that a proper work-life balance improves employee satisfaction and overall morale.

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