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Millions to Benefit From UK’s New Flexible Working Bill

New legislation empowers employees to shape work-life balance and boosts productivity across industries.

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Employees now possess the right to request flexible working arrangements.
55 per cent expressing intentions to seek such arrangements.
Flexible Working Bill fulfills a commitment outlined in the 2019 Manifesto.

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The implementation of the Flexible Working Bill on April 6th grants millions of workers across the UK increased autonomy in determining their work settings and schedules.

Under the new legislation, employees now possess the right to request flexible working arrangements from day one of their employment. Employers are legally obligated to consider these requests and provide transparent reasoning for any rejections.

This development follows a series of victories for workers, including a record rise in the National Minimum Wage and enhanced protections for parents and unpaid caregivers.

A recent report from Slack, released in January, underscored a strong desire for flexible working among UK employees, with 55 per cent expressing intentions to seek such arrangements.

Furthermore, a notable 70 per cent of workers indicate a greater inclination to apply for positions at companies with flexible working policies, with this figure rising to 76 per cent among individuals aged 18 to 34.

70 per cent of workers indicate a greater inclination to apply for positions at companies with flexible working policies

The enactment of the Flexible Working Bill fulfills a commitment outlined in the 2019 Manifesto, aimed at fostering a culture of flexible working. Employers are now mandated to engage in discussions regarding employees’ requests, who are entitled to make two such requests annually.

Research from Stanford University in 2022 revealed that remote workers tend to be 9 per cent more productive compared to their office-based counterparts.

Remote work offers a plethora of advantages for both employees and businesses, including heightened job satisfaction leading to increased productivity and revenue generation.

Sachin Agrawal, Managing Director at Zoho UK, lauded the introduction of the Flexible Working Bill as a significant advancement for workers. He emphasised its role in empowering employees to take greater control over their work-life balance, enabling them to reside outside densely populated urban areas, enjoy more affordable living conditions, and maintain closer ties with family and friends. Additionally, Agrawal highlighted the potential for remote work to foster the equitable distribution of skills and expertise across the nation.

Technology, Agrawal noted, plays a pivotal role in facilitating remote and hybrid working models. Real-time collaboration and communication tools, integrated within comprehensive unified systems, enable seamless interactions among team members irrespective of their physical location. This, in turn, sustains productivity levels and staff motivation while enhancing the overall employee experience through increased flexibility afforded by remote work.

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