How to Implement Flex Time the Right Way in Hybrid and Remote Teams?
What is Flextime?
Flex time or flexible working — the ability to work outside traditional work hours, or to work flexible hours while meeting required metrics.
Flexible work schedule options can help employees manage their work-life balance. Employees with families need to navigate a kid's school schedules, while others may want more time off on weekends so they can pursue hobbies or go on adventures. Since there is no one-size-fits-all solution for life outside of the office, making your entire workforce adhere to a 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday through Friday schedule may not be feasible—or even desirable—for everyone involved.
Benefits of Flextime or Flexible working
- Managers who have implemented flex time have seen their employees' performance increase dramatically.
- Employees will be less stressed and have better mental health.
- Flex time helps managers retain top talent.
- 88% of employees say it's an important factor in job satisfaction.
- When implemented correctly, flex time can help you build your team’s morale and improve their productivity.
5 Tips To Implement Flex Time In Hybrid and Remote Teams(the right way!)
Whether you have a hybrid workplace model or a remote work model, in his article you will learn how you can implement flexible scheduling policies in your organization that satisfies every employee's needs - because productivity shouldn't come at the expense of mental health!
1. Set Flex Time Guidelines
Once you decide to implement flexible timings in your remote or hybrid workplace, you need to address the potential problems that can occur with flex time, and what you can do to prevent them. First off, set clear guidelines for how flex time works at your company. Does it mean employees can come in at 9:30 instead of 9 am? Can they take a longer break to run an errand during the day? Establishing company-wide expectations about what is considered flex time and what isn't can help prevent any awkward moments down the road.
Another issue you'll want to touch on is communication around flex time. Be crystal clear about how employees need to communicate when they're coming in late or leaving early. What does your team use for its main project management tool? Make sure there's a way for teammates to update their status or check-in with their team via Slack or some other messaging tool. The point is that if someone comes in late or leaves early, no one feels confused or annoyed by not knowing where they are, because they've been updated via these tools.
2. Think About Employee Preferences and Work-Life Balance
When your employees have enough downtime in the week, they can recharge their batteries so they’re more productive when they’re working. Plus, if you make sure this happens, then your employees will be happier and less stressed, which also makes them more productive.
While this might seem like a no-brainer at first glance, remember that not everyone wants flexible hours or remote workdays; some people prefer the structure of a set schedule with definite start and end times every day. Before you tell an employee that he can work from home on Wednesdays after he finishes his morning tasks (or any other similar arrangement), ask him if he prefers traditional office hours so that he can keep his off-hours free for family obligations or other activities outside of work.
3. Think About Business Peak Hours
Business hours are the hours in which your business is open, and those hours may vary depending on the department. It’s important to have availability during specific peak hours so that customers can reach employees and coworkers can reach each other .
Discuss with your team the peak hours? When do you get the most calls or emails from customers? What are your slowest hours? What times of day or night does it seem like everyone has disappeared from the office or online chat?
There might be certain hours, days, or times your business will need to be open, but beyond that, think about how you can make flexible work schedules possible for employees.
When setting up your flexible schedule, managers should sit down with employees and create guidelines around when everyone should be available so that other employees can contact them if necessary.
Next, establish clear customer-facing schedules. Once these have been established, make sure they’re advertised clearly and prominently on your website so that customers know when they can expect support or assistance if needed.
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4. Consider An Asynchronous Work Schedule
Flexible hours are an excellent option for many employees, but your entire company doesn’t need to shift to a flexible schedule. Instead, consider an asynchronous schedule. An asynchronous schedule allows employees to start and end their day at different times while still working together when needed. Asynchronous schedules don’t work for every position or every team, but they can help with work-life balance and productivity in many remote and hybrid teams.
Employees on asynchronous schedules work during the times of day that suit them best without being tied to a specific time frame for starting or ending the day. This type of flexibility means that employees can take time off during the day if needed without having to use vacation time; they can also go back later in the evening if they have other things keeping them busy earlier in their day. The goal is to maintain productivity while allowing people some freedom over when they get their work done rather than requiring them to be online at a certain time.
An asynchronous schedule is great for those who want some autonomy over when they work but still need the structure of knowing what needs to be done each day (and by when). It also requires good communication between team members so that everyone understands what others are doing, even if not everyone is working at the same time each day.
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5. Make Sure Every Employee In Your Team Is On The Same Page
Be sure that every employee in your team is on the same page. Everything from hours to employee engagement, communication and collaboration will be impacted by flex time policies, so it’s critical that all of these items are communicated in a clear and effective manner.
To do this, conduct frequent in-person meetings where teammates get in line with each other on what is expected of each person under the new system. Finally, get feedback from them on whether they feel there are any gaps or gray areas that need clarification.
Be sure to emphasize that this is just a trial run. No matter how much planning you put into implementing flex time, it's still an adjustment for everyone—they may not like having to find out what works best for them right away. Make sure they know there’s time built into the process for trial-and-error adjustments as long as people communicate clearly about their experiences under the new system and suggest improvements for the future.
Bonus: Team building activities are a great way to break the barriers between your employees and bond and collaborate better. Explore our range of team building activities (both virtual and offsite) tailored to fit your team needs.
To sum up
In the end, and with a little bit of planning and teamwork, it is possible to implement flex time in a remote or hybrid team. While this structure may not be right for every team, it is an option worth exploring. It allows teams to find a balance between work-family and work-life balance that works for everyone involved. Of course, before implementing flex time policies across the board in your remote or hybrid team, it’s worth considering whether your company culture is ready for this type of change.