So far we have been through what flexible work actually is and why you should give it a shot. It’s about time to talk about how to go from thought to reality in the best possible way. As with any organizational change, there are some things that are worth considering before starting, just to make sure you give the change the best possible chance.
Involve your coworkers
A transition to flexible working is something that will affect your entire organization, and to the highest degree – your employees. You have to involve them, simply to even have a chance to do it right. Depending on how large your organization is you will have to adjust how much you can involve every individual. If you have a lot of coworkers, our recommendation is that you create focus groups and then ask them questions. Collect as much information as you can on what they need and prefer, how they work and what tasks they go through during the day. Another perk of involving your coworkers early on is getting a larger buy-in before implementing the change.
After you’ve involved your coworkers it’s time to sit down with your team and plan the details. The best result will come from combining your knowledge of the organization with your coworkers wishes. It might seem dull but by creating some form of policy document where you clearly write how flexible working is supposed to work within your organization is a really great idea. By letting your employees know what's expected of them and how they can plan their day makes it easier for everyone. For example, is there any core hours that everyone needs to be available during the day?
Design your workplace
Some might need access to quiet areas during different periods throughout the day, and some might need space to walk around and make sales calls. You need to enable both options. Usually, a successful tactic is copying another successful organization. But it's also important to reflect your own organization – what works for others might not work for your business.
See it as a living process
Most likely you're not going to get everything perfect on your first try. Changing to flexible working is a process. Not sticking entirely to plan is therefore not a failure but a necessity to succeed. Collect feedback continuously, listen and analyze what steps you need to take moving forward. Are the phone booths not being used? Are the Huddle Rooms too few? Why and how do you fix it?
Make sure you prep the tech
There are some physical aspects which undoubtedly makes the change easier from assigned seating to flexible seating. We will get even deeper into this in our next article on how to prep your office for flexible seating, but nevertheless it’s worth mentioning it here as well. There are several different tech tools which will make your coworkers' days more seamless and productive. For example; a system for booking a desk for the day, charging stations on every desk and docking stations.
Keep an eye out for our guide on how to prepare your office for flexible working!