This week is all about employers looking to promote conversations around employee mental wellbeing and how they are balancing their work life alongside their personal life.
We can all name a time in our lives where we have struggled to balance working responsibilities and have time for family, friends and ourselves. However, this week is a great opportunity for employers to demonstrate how their organisation strives for a family friendly and flexible working culture.
How to manage a healthy work-life balance?
A healthy work-life balance will mean different things to us all. It’s not so much about splitting your time 50/50 between work and leisure, but making sure you feel fulfilled and content in both areas of your life.
Work-life balance will vary from person to person, depending on our lifestyles as a whole. If you’re at the start of your career, you may be more dedicated to building skills, knowledge, career progression and having fun. As you become more settled in your career, you may notice your priorities start to shift, recognising that work isn’t the only focus you want in life.
A good work-life balance, has numerous positive effects, including less stress, a lower risk of burnout and a greater sense of wellbeing. This not only benefits employees but employers, too.
The standard work week is about to change
As a result of the pandemic the traditional 9-5 working model is changing, with more organisations allowing employees to work remotely or to have a hybrid approach, working in both the office and at home. On first impression it may seem that employees have more freedom and flexibility, but in some cases, these changes have led to employees working outside of their normal working hours more often, and/or struggling to separate work and home.
With this in mind, employers need to set expectations for employees working from home and outline the importance of keeping home and work life separate. We also recommend employers have regular review meetings with employees working from home, to understand how they are finding the new way of working and to offer support where needed.
What is flexible working?
We appreciate that flexible working may not be a priority for all businesses, however, do keep in mind that flexible working can be completed in many different forms, and does not just mean working from home on a part time or full-time basis. We encourage clients to contact their designated HR Advisor, who can talk through your flexible working policy and the variety of options available.
How can employees change their working hours?
Even if, despite the pandemic, your ways of working have remained the same, employers should still be mindful that employees are entitled to submit a flexible working request.
Employers should ask for any requests in writing and follow this up in a meeting to discuss the employees request to see if the company can accommodate this. For further information regarding employees’ rights and the process around flexible working, please see here.