2. Determine the activities within roles that can be flexed
Even when roles seem to offer no room for flexibility, ask whether activities within a role can be flexible. This approach can surface hidden opportunities to provide employees with the wiggle room and autonomy they’re hoping for, and it improves the employee value proposition overall.
HR leaders can help managers map out employees’ activities for flexible work options. For example, while the role of IT and tech support might be considered inflexible due to the need to be on call, some tasks, like answering queries can still be done successfully under more flexible work arrangements.
3. Source manager-tested best practices
Traditionally, most organizations lean on HR leaders to identify solutions to improve flexible work environments. However, HR leaders’ direct reports and associates are typically knowledge employees who lack firsthand experience managing non-knowledge workers.
HR leaders must leverage insights from frontline managers to further understand best practices that work in the context of their employees’ real experiences. Also, take note of which managers are outperforming to uncover flexible work options already being unofficially piloted within the organization.
4. Work with cross-functional partners
Enact cross-functional tiger teams to better understand how to extend flexibility to all employees. This approach allows HR and business leaders to share wisdom, expertise, and understanding of the opportunities, and it drives organizational alignment and collaboration.
Leading organizations can improve performance by providing flexibility on all aspects of their work and recognizing their workforce is composed of people, not just employees.
The original article by Emily Strother, Gartner's senior principal for research, is here.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of DigitalWorkforceTrends. Image credit: iStockphoto/YakobchukOlena