Future Friday Redo: Do flexible work schedules require flexible services?

by Michael Haberman on September 21, 2018 · 2 comments

To have flexible workplaces we have to have a flexible society.

I have been working on a presentation on flexible work schedules for a conference in November. It made me think of this post from earlier in the year.

I read about a very interesting study done by Prof. Seán Ó Riain from Maynooth University, Ireland, on changes that have occurred in the workplace since 1995. His contention is that while workplaces have become more flexible the world of services around the workplace have not. He says “We’re at a stage where we need to think about, now that we’re living in this world of flexible work, how do we respond to that? What are the kinds of services that will enable people to stay in these jobs for a lifetime?

Flexible work in an inflexible world

As the workplace has evolved work schedules have evolved. We now come in earlier or later than the 8 am or 9 am to 5 workplaces that have evolved. But for that to become more widespread the world outside the workplace needs to evolve too. Most services, beyond retail, have settled into the “9 to 5” schedule. Daycare services have adopted some, but government services have not on a widespread basis. Repair services of many types have not really adapted. Try to find a car repair shop open at 10 pm or a doctor’s office that deals with more than emergency services. As the professor says of our flexible work schedule “It also demands more complex, more high-quality public services. A general set of services that everybody benefits from actually becomes more important when people are working in more different ways than they used to.” We generally have to adapt to their schedules than they have to adapt to the working world.

The future must be a coordinated effort

One of the oddities that Ó Riain found was that the more flexibility there was in a workplace the more planning there needed to be. I think we will find that the more flexible companies want to provide will depend on the flexibility of services being provided. If we truly want a flexible workplace society, the more there needs to be a coordinated effort among government, education, service providers, retail companies and other segments of the business world. Otherwise, we will stick to the “9 to 5” model and the burden of flexibility will be on employers, who will only go so far.

Do you think this can occur? What flexibility issues have you seen in your world?

Sign up for free HR Solutions updates via email

Omega HR Solutions, Inc. uses creative human resource solutions to provide answers to time, money and service issues with employers and their employees. Visit our Products and Services page for more information or contact us to learn how we can help your organization.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

santosh September 23, 2018 at 8:18 am

Great post. Thanks for sharing the information would like to know more on HR Consultants Gheewala Jobs


santosh October 3, 2018 at 2:09 pm

Thanks for sharing would like to know more on HR consultants Gheewala jobs


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: