Are technology and flexibility the key to achieving a work-life balance?

Technology is remodelling the workplace – and it’s no longer in an office.

Smartphones revolutionised working life. We are now contactable all hours of the day and most of us also have our work emails, files and group chats on our mobiles too.

If you’re like me, your email is the first thing you check in the morning (possibly after twitter). But is this 24/7 access having a negative impact on our work-life balance?

According to The New York Times the explosion of portable devices such as smartphones, tablets and laptops has actually given the US workforce a lot more flexibility. In fact, last year 44% of American employees said their company offered flexi-time or remote working.

Portable devices and technology such as instant messaging, voice notes, audio and video conferencing have made the workplace ‘hypermobile’. Wi-Fi is available everywhere and file sharing means that documents can be updated in real time from anywhere – so surely the need to be office based nine-to-five is redundant.

Increasingly employees are demanding more flexibility, in 2017 51% said they would change jobs for more flexi-time. Many of the candidates we work with at Meet feel the same, stating greater flexibility or remote working opportunities as their main motivation for job seeking! Whether it’s the commute, missing out on quality time with the kids, walking the dog or making that gym class – it’s about achieving a work-life balance.

But flexible working also benefits employers. If you can do everything at home without the additional office distractions obviously you’re going to be more productive! The benefits for businesses are well documented; from increased employee engagement to lower overheads and an overall better team performance.

The biggest concerns our candidates have about working remotely or using their flexi-time is feeling out of the loop with their colleagues. But, most find they actually have better communication channels with a great number of colleagues than they did being fully office based. Again, this is to do with technology - the plethora of internal networks such as Facebook workplace, Slack and yammer are used by most businesses to build an engaged workforce.

Obviously not all roles can offer 100% remote working, but in the era of the ‘hypermobile office’ does your current role offer you enough flexibility in return for being available 24/7?

Here at Meet we are currently recruiting for 32 remotely based positions across Biometrics, Medical Writing, Quality Assurance and more. Or, if you are juggling too much and looking for more flexibility, give us a call to discuss what opportunities would suit you!

 

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