Survey: Flexible Working Rights 'Make Little Difference'

Bupa Finds Many Employees Not Confident About Flexible Working


Fergal Dowling, Partner | +44 (0)121 214 5476
The right to request flexible working has made little practical difference to many employees, according to the results of a new survey from Bupa.
The health insurance firm polled 2,000 employees of UK SMEs to find that only six per cent believe it has made any difference within their organisation.
Just a third (32 per cent) were confident that their boss would support them if they made such a request, and 37 per cent said they would be concerned about losing their jobs if they did.
This is despite benefits such as flexible working being viewed as key by many workers. Half of respondents said they felt that companies underestimate the part benefits play in the overall attractiveness of a company.
"While not every job or industry lends itself to flexible working, by supporting it where appropriate, leaders and managers can help attract talent and keep their workforce happy and productive," said Richard Norris, SME director at Bupa.

Expert Opinion
Flexible working offers benefits to both workers and their employers – ensuring that the former have the advantage of being able to work at times which suit them and their lives, while the latter benefit from having an engaged and happy workforce.

"Companies should not underestimate the importance of offering flexible working and other benefits to their staff and we would urge small businesses to recognise this from the outset.

"Employers should not delay in getting advice on the matter from legal experts who can advise on key policies and regulations regarding such matters."
Fergal Dowling, Partner