Should you introduce flexible working hours?

Content provided by a guest contributor.

These days, more and more companies are allowing their employees to choose their own hours. There are around four to five hours during which people have to be at work. Apart from these non-negotiable hours, employees can decide whether to work the remaining hours early in the morning or late in the afternoon/evening.

This trend of offering flexible working hours has many benefits for small businesses. However, at the same time, it has its downfalls. When deciding whether you should introduce flexible working hours to your employees, consider these pros and cons.

Pro: Flexible working hours mean people work during their best hours

Anyone who has ever worked in an office knows there are morning people and then there are evening people. Some employees thrive at 7am and others do their best work long after lunch. Giving your staff the option of choosing their own hours means they’ll always work when they’re at their best. Which obviously results in both increased productivity and higher quality work.

Con: Your staff may not be available for clients

If your staff members need to interact with clients, then flexible hours could be a problem. Clients don’t want to be told they can only contact the company during four to five hours in a day, and they certainly don’t want to call repeatedly looking for one specific person. So, if certain employees deal directly with clients, you may not want to allow them this flexibility.

Pro: It allows your staff to have a better work/life balance

You may think your employees’ personal lives shouldn’t matter to you but they do impact your business. If someone has a meeting at their child’s school or a doctor’s appointment, they may have to take time off work. However, if they work flexible hours, they can just work in the time and use their free time for personal admin. They could also use their free time in ways that benefit the company, like taking extra courses on customer service management, for example.

Con: Your team won’t always be available for each other

Teamwork is important, especially in SMEs. Everybody needs to be able to communicate what they’re working on, and ask their colleagues questions. Having a few set working hours does help with this, but problems could arise if someone needs urgent help outside of those hours.

Pro: You can advertise this as a benefit to potential employees

When a person is applying for a job, they look at all the potential benefits as well as the salary offered. If your business offers flexible working hours, it may be more attractive to a skilled employee than a competing company. It could make the difference between hiring an average worker and an excellent worker.

Con: Employees may take advantage of the benefit

Unfortunately, it’s a possibility that people will use flexible hours to work less hours. It’s almost impossible for you to keep an eye on when each and every employee arrives and leaves. Someone could come in late and exit early without you noticing. If you introduce flexible working hours, it’s important you know you can trust your staff.


The content in this article is provided by Kwelanga Training – a fully accredited Provider or Education and Training. The company partners with clients to achieve exponential growth through its commitment to developing human potential by offering instructor-led skills and development training.

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