Organisations that negotiate innovative work practices which also benefit staff are forward-looking, competitive and profitable. They regard job security and responding to the needs of employees as a priority.
Work-life balance is central to positive flexibility in the organisation of work. But to be successful and achieve a win-win outcome for staff and management everyone affected must have the opportunity to participate actively in the process of change.
Flexibility can mean management imposing forms of work organisation on employees who are given no opportunity to state their opinions or explain their needs. Positive flexibility is where working people have more autonomy and choice, and where the employer invests in development and training and works in partnership with the workforce.
This version of flexibility produces a skilled and adaptable workforce, meeting the employers needs for competitiveness, whilst also increasing workers’ security.
Achieving work-life balance requires management and unions to work together in partnership. A genuine partnership has:
The case studies show how working in partnership can achieve positive flexibility:
The Work Foundation has produced a set in-depth Employers for Work-Life Balance case studies of organisations of varying sizes, which have developed successful work-life strategies in response to a wide range of issues.
The most recent documents available on this subject are:Case Study - Lloyds TSB
Work-life balance helps recruit, and keep, top-calibre staff
Hooked on flexitime
staff retention through flexible working
Meeting the demographic challenge
Time of our lives project
establishing “changing times champions”
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