This year’s National Work Life Week, run by Working Families aims to educate businesses and employers of the importance of staff well-being and a positive work life balance, and how this impacts productivity, motivation and engagement in the workplace.
Many employees in the UK are increasingly feeling the pressure at work and are putting in the hours to hit deadlines and live up to company expectations. A study by the Trade Union Congress showed that the number of people working more than 48 hours per week has risen, with 13% of the workforce putting in this many hours. Employees do not have to stay late at the office to fit in this many hours; as technology continues to improve, working remotely from any location in the world has never been easier, making it difficult to completely switch off from work when taking some much needed family time.
But it is essential that employees understand the dangers of long hours at work and are reminded we should all make time to look after our relationships, our home lives, and our wellbeing.
Although these extra hours are being put in, they don’t seem to be paying off; the extra work being put into UK businesses is not increasing productivity, so we should be questioning how we can work smarter rather than harder.
With this in mind, are UK businesses giving staff the option to be more flexible? Research published by recruitment consultants Robert Half found that in the last three years the adoption of flexible working by UK organisations has increased by 37%. Half of employers in London have also created more flexible working opportunities within the same time period. This is down to an increased understanding of the benefits of flexible working to both businesses and individuals themselves including increased productivity, loyalty and staff motivation as well as the overall staff wellbeing.
Source: The Telegraph, 2015