Public Sector Focus

26.02.19

Flexible working being led by the public sector, Softworks survey finds

The public sector is leading the way in regards to flexible working, with 94% of public sector organisations offering this to employees, a new survey has revealed.

The survey by Softworks, in partnership with Public Sector Executive, sought to learn more about the flexibility within the public sector along with how current and future technologies could be designed to improve operational processes.

Nearly 88% of organisations allow their staff to have flexible start and finish times, and other popular features were job-sharing, career breaks and remote-working which all saw more than two-thirds of companies offer them.

The survey revealed that the top two challenges to managing flexible working were ensuring correct staffing levels to cover skills and knowledge, and ensuring a fair and equitable application of flexible working policies for all employees.

Just under half of respondents agreed that effectively managing these areas was challenging.

Another major challenge was there being too many manual processes or high levels of administration and difficulties there to measure employee performance, with 47% of employees finding this challenging.

Other challenges included ensuring compliance with health and safety and employment legislation and employees building up too many hours and not using their time.

Around 43% also expressed concerns about managers not being trained to manage flexible or remote workers.

Softworks’ survey, also aimed at understanding how technology would make managing flexible working easier, found that more investment in technology to manage remote working was highly requested.

Easier to use systems and better displays, automated employee rostering, and better system links with payroll were also high on the wish list.

Softworks said the survey concluded that there was less emphasis on the traditional nine to five office-based job and increased demand for flexible working options with regards to time and space.

“There is a great opportunity for technology providers to align themselves more closely with public sector organisations.”

Image credit - PeopleImages

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