20 February 2019

Flexible working: The Mum-myth!

Career Advice

Flexible-working. A term long regarded as a luxury afforded only to working-mums, reinforcing ‘traditional’ gender roles. This lack of understanding has contributed to a somewhat confusing definition of the term. A stigma has been attached to what should be seen as a positive aspect of modern working life.

So, what does it really mean?

Gov.uk defines it simply as, “a way of working that suits an employee’s needs.” We actually have a legal right to request it! So why do so many of us still see it as a luxury? Exploring flexible working requests can empower employees to find a balance that suits their lifestyle. With the rise of flexible work from home jobs, companies are recognising the benefits of accommodating diverse work arrangements. Embracing flexible work practices fosters inclusivity and enhances employee satisfaction, ultimately driving productivity and success.

A candidate-centric approach

Here at the Serocor group, flexible-working is actively encouraged. It’s clear the traditional 9-5 working day just doesn’t cut it anymore. Working flexibly allows us to embrace this and use it to our advantage.

Sarah Howard, Head of Marketing, is an ardent supporter of flexible-working for this reason. She champions the benefits of flexible work arrangements, advocating for employees’ rights to make a flexible working request. With the increasing availability of flexible work from home jobs, our company recognises the importance of accommodating diverse needs and lifestyles. By embracing flexible work practices, we foster a positive and inclusive work culture that prioritises employee well-being and productivity.

“My entire team works flexibly, meaning there is usually someone in from 7.30am to 6.30pm, which is great for approachability and working with colleagues in different time zones. We also found that candidates prefer to be contacted outside of working hours. So it’s more candidate-centric to have a range of people in the office when candidates are available.”

Broaching it with the boss…

Director of People Development, Heather Cracknell, works condensed hours over a 9 day fortnight; “…Although as a member of HR who actively promotes flexible working, it did take me weeks before I had the conversation with my manager. I really overthought every scenario I could and had examples of how it would benefit me as well as the company. It was, in fact, one of the easiest conversations I have had, no examples needed, just a positive “yes”!” This just re-enforces that if you work hard, show commitment and dedication, it is never a hard conversation to have. “It’s great, I know that extra day off benefits me and provides some much needed “me time”.”

What is Flexible Working?

Flexible working refers to a work arrangement that offers employees the freedom to choose their work hours, location, or pattern to better suit their individual needs. This can include options such as part-time hours, remote work, flexible start and finish times, or compressed workweeks.

Embracing flexible working allows individuals to achieve a better balance between their professional and personal lives, resulting in increased job satisfaction and overall well-being. At ARM, we recognise the importance of flexible working arrangements in supporting employees, particularly working mothers, in managing their responsibilities effectively while pursuing their career goals.

Who Can Make a Flexible Working Request?

Flexible working requests are open to all employees, regardless of gender or parental status. At ARM, we believe in promoting inclusivity and accommodating the diverse needs of our workforce. Whether you’re a parent juggling childcare responsibilities, a caregiver balancing work and family commitments, or simply seeking a better work-life balance, you have the right to request flexible working arrangements.

Our company values diversity and recognises the importance of supporting employees in achieving their professional and personal goals. Making a flexible working request is a proactive step towards creating a more flexible and supportive work environment for all members of our team.

What to Do if Your Employer Refuses Your Request

If your employer refuses your flexible working request, it’s important to first understand the reasons behind their decision. Engage in open and respectful communication to discuss any concerns and explore potential compromises. Review your company’s flexible working policy and consider appealing the decision if you believe it was unjustified. Seeking advice from HR or a legal professional can also provide clarity on your rights and options.

Remember to remain professional and constructive throughout the process, focusing on finding a solution that meets both your needs and the needs of the business. At ARM, we value transparent communication and strive to find mutually beneficial outcomes for our employees.

Why Choose Us?

At ARM, we prioritise the well-being and satisfaction of our employees. With a commitment to promoting flexible working arrangements, we empower our team members to achieve a harmonious balance between their professional and personal lives. Our inclusive culture values diversity and supports individuals in navigating their unique circumstances, whether it’s managing childcare responsibilities or pursuing personal interests outside of work.

We understand the importance of flexibility in today’s dynamic work environment and strive to provide a supportive and accommodating atmosphere for all. Choose ARM for a workplace that prioritises your individual needs and fosters a culture of inclusivity, respect, and empowerment.

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