Flexible working arrangements have considerably different impacts in different countries

Research Briefing

Keywords: flexible working arrangements, absenteeism, national culture, turnover, organisational outcomes

More and more organisations are turning towards flexible working arrangements in order to increase their flexibility and competitiveness and to retain key personnel. Flexible working arrangements commonly include job sharing, flexitime (whereby the employee decides their working hours to some degree or other), work week compression (where people work longer days, but a reduced number of days in the week), remote working, teleworking, home based working, for example.

These practices are becoming more commonplace around the world and have been found to have a range of benefits, including reducing absenteeism, reducing turnover and increasing work performance and organisational outcomes. However, the research in this area is not entirely aligned in terms of the impact that flexible working arrangements have. For example, some studies have suggested the flexible working arrangements can have a negative impact in terms of absenteeism, turnover intentions and organisational outcomes.

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