What are Flexible Workers?

Before you ask, no. Flexible workers are not employees who attend some new workplace yoga class trend. Please rest assured that there is no exercise required when working flexibly. Rather, the term is used to describe a more realistic and dynamic type of worker.

 

Before we dive into defining what a flexible worker is, it helps to first remind ourselves of what remote workers are.

 

Most people are familiar with the notion of “remote workers.” In fact, in May, 2020, approximately 50% of the entire US workforce were remote workers1. Known for their home offices, reduced commute times, and reportedly happier work-life balances, remote workers have been the envy of the workforce for the past several years. However, despite the perceived appeal, I am here to tell you that remote working is not all that it is cracked up to be.

 

Let me explain.

What are Flexible Workers?

Remote working is surprisingly restrictive and overall, an unrealistic goal for employees. The work type requires that employees stay confined to their homes, undisrupted, for 8+ hours per day, AND have access to a designated office space and a reliable and strong internet connection.

 

🙄 – who has all of that??

 

Rather, a more dynamic and realistic type of worker is known as a flexible worker.

 

Flexible workers are staff members who have been empowered and equipped to perform their job’s responsibilities from anywhere, at any time. Flexible workers are not restricted to the confinement of their home office. They may be found checking emails in the waiting room of their doctor’s office, taking, and transferring customer calls while walking down the aisle at their local supermarket, or conducting face-to-face meetings in a traditional office setting.   

Why are Flexible Workers Important?

Flexible workers are the future of the workforce. Starting with the millennial generation, who currently consists of anyone between the ages of 21 and 40 years old. Evidence shows that the human mind is evolving the ability to multitask more efficiently than ever before2.

This change in the workforce means that employees no longer require the traditional designated desk space to be productive. In fact, younger generations are now more productive when they are enabled to juggle multiple tasks at once. Employers must evolve with these new generations so that they may stay current, retain, and attract new staff, and avoid being swept aside in the labor market.

How You Can Get Your Staff Working Flexibly

You may be asking yourself, “how do I start empowering my employees to work more flexibly?”

 

To create a flexible workforce, you will need to focus on making your staff as mobile as possible. This means providing them with access to your line of business applications, company files, and a way to communicate to other team members and customers.

Providing your staff with laptops and/or tablets with secure remote access is a great first step.   Another way to empower your employees to work more flexibly is to implement a dynamic communication and collaboration tool, such as Microsoft Teams.   The Microsoft Teams app is one of the many applications that become available to you when you sign up for a Microsoft 365 Business subscription3. With the Teams app users gain the ability to instant message, perform video and audio calls, participate in company discussion boards, access and collaborate on company files, and host online meetings all from a single application that can be installed on their desktop and smartphones.

By empowering your employees to work flexibly, not just remotely, you will set more realistic expectations, provide your staff with the freedom to stay productive, and attract more applicants. For assistance in developing a more flexible workforce, check out First Calls’ Teams Boost Packs! Need to purchase a new fleet of laptops or tablets for your workers? We can help with that too!

Let's Work Together!

Schedule a discovery meeting with one of our Solution Specialists to discuss how First Call can help you SUCCESSFULLY implement a flexible work solution in your Organization!