FlexiBees now has a thriving community on the Sheroes platform, and we recently published a series of polls to create awareness of the different aspects of flexibility in work. This post below is a continuation of that effort, with insights from the poll responses embedded in it. Read on.
Flexibility is the solution, it’s a revolution
Over the last couple of weeks, we have come to know you a little. And we daresay, you might have come to know us a bit too. We like to bust myths for one. And we like flexibility in work. Really really like it. And while our community is still growing, we have to say that you women are amazing when it comes to hitting the right answers. Our polls that seeded the mythbusters were answered near perfectly, which gives us immense hope for the flexi world we are trying to create. You guys already get it :)
So what does flexibility in work mean?
Over the last couple of weeks, our aim was to show you what a flexible ecosystem can look like. Our three polls were around different aspects of flexible working, with the first one - ‘what does flexibility in work mean to you’ - being the most fundamental to the subject. Through it we wanted to create awareness of the fact that flexible working today is not just one or two types of jobs like part-time or work-from-home but a mindset that spans all types of work arrangements including full-time work. In fact in more advanced economies, the spectrum is rich with some of the most frequently cited options being as below.
The spectrum of flexible options that are available in developed economies
We will do posts explaining each of these better, but the key idea here is that a simple 9 to 5 (or 9 to 7) just doesn’t work anymore. Each individual’s life is shaped differently, and flexible working essentially is an attempt to mould one’s working arrangement to it. In an ideal world, this spectrum is fluid, and as your life-stage changes, you can move from one kind to another, seamlessly. So a person working half-time should be able to move to full-time as her children grow up a bit, but retaining the flexibility of starting the day a bit late or ending early to be able to work around her family-time. And childcare or family responsibilities are just a few of the reasons why this spectrum is desirable - a recent study by the staffing firm Randstad says that 1 in 2 employees in India irrespective of their gender and life-stage want to telecommute to work. That is not surprising when you consider that commute times are getting increasingly longer and more tedious and even lead to productivity losses.
Long commute times can kill productivity
Can all jobs really be done flexibly?
Our second poll focussed on the types of jobs that can be done flexibly. It is a widely held belief that anything of a remote or part-time nature is best suited to a particular kind of job, one that does not need much team interaction or isn’t time sensitive. Maybe this was true at one point when technology was less advanced. But with the coming of the cloud, video conferencing facilities, instant messaging, task manager apps, etc and with augmented and virtual reality in the pipeline, remote and part-time working is much easier to do for all types of jobs. More so, the employee of today is a different animal than that of 20-30 years ago even. Today, he or she seeks more empowerment in making decisions and more autonomy in their working environment. This latter means that even full-time employees don’t want to work by the clock, rather want to set their own work hours. Especially true if they are women, who need the flexibility to be able to do justice to their family priorities. Given all of this, today there is absolutely no need to identify flexibility in work with only certain kinds of jobs, any and all of them can be done flexibly. We hope that once this thinking sets in, fewer women will need to take complete breaks in their careers, more women will return to work a lot sooner, and many more will integrate better into work after returning and feel fulfilled - not just professionally but also personally.
And get this - around the world, there are many companies that operate a 100% remotely - with every employee, across functions, working remotely. There are many benefits associated with this, which we at FlexiBees well know, because we are also a 100% remote team, working across countries and cities in India!
Our holiday card to wish our clients a happy 2019, from across different countries and cities
Tell me who does it all benefit?
Our third and final poll of this series asked the question - who does flexibility in work really benefit? It is a common mistake to assume that only women, especially mothers, benefit from it. Increasingly so, people are becoming resistant to the idea of spending their entire selves at work, and want to pursue other passions. Also while still a small percentage relatively speaking, many men are also sharing childcare work equally or even primarily; they need flexibility in work as much as any working mother.
And finally, the best point of all - the one that turns this entire argument on its head - is that even businesses need flexibility. Today the business environment is highly competitive, with new skills emerging overnight, and large companies find themselves unable to cope with the speed or the new-age skills needed. There is no time to hire in a pristine full-time manner for every single role, and often the people at the cutting edge of these skills don’t want to be tied down to one company anyway. In such an environment, hiring from a pool of external experts is the best way ahead - these experts come fully trained, bring their own domain knowledge and can be hired on a project basis that works well for everyone. There are many other examples of benefits that flexibility brings to businesses, examples, remote working saves on real estate costs and other overheads, giving workers the option to work as per their own time improves productivity and happiness, etc. And finally, since the worker of tomorrow in all likelihood is a flexibility-seeking purpose-driven individual with a life outside work, the business of tomorrow has no choice but to comply.
Businesses in India will have to change and offer more flexibility
And here we are. A rather long post, but then there is so much to say. In a nutshell, flexibility in work is a game-changer, a paradigm shift, and we at FlexiBees are proud and honored to help make you aware of what all it can offer. Moreover, we are committed to helping you in any other way, with information & guidance around preparing for flexible work, evaluating your returnship or upskilling yourself. If we were to redesign the structure of work from scratch today for say, Earth2.0, rest assured no woman would have to choose between work and life, office and home, financial independence and family, and that’s what we aim to do - help dissolve these rigid boundaries to mould work to the shape of each woman’s life that lets her do justice to everything she cares about.
If you are interested to explore flexible work options with FlexiBees clients, register yourself with your detailed experience, skill-sets and resume at:
We are not sending individual responses for registrations. If you are shortlisted for any role based on your experience, our recruitment team will get in touch with you.