These Trending Flexible Work Approaches are Proven to Raise Revenue and Employee Retention While Lowering Costs

These Trending Flexible Work Approaches are Proven to Raise Revenue and Employee Retention While Lowering Costs


No matter the economy or job market, one thing is clear—remote and hybrid work are here to stay. Millennials dominate the workforce, and Gen Z professionals are on the rise. The way job candidates think about how we work and what a workplace looks like has undergone an all-out paradigm shift since the COVID pandemic started. And employers learned a lot about hiring and retaining talent during The Great Resignation. 

Increasingly, professionals are looking for more flexibility. Studies show that more women left the workforce than men during the pandemic because of the lack of work-life balance—juggling family and professional obligations. 

Our way of life has changed dramatically since 2020, but women workers still maintain the majority of familial responsibilities at home. And for many female professionals, flexibility isn’t just a perk but a requirement to balance their role at home. Meanwhile, workforce demographics are changing—fast.

Let’s Talk about Generational Differences

Millennials now dominate the workforce and a good portion of mid-to-senior level positions, with the eldest of their generation being 42. They are both always connected, tech-savvy, and known for challenging the status quo regarding long work commutes and the need for work-life balance. Known for their entrepreneurial approach to navigating the working world, millennials crave flexible schedules and remote or hybrid working environments. They want to be valued for their contributions, not how much time they spend on-site in an office. Millennials are dedicated and passionate workers wanting to find meaning and purpose in their work. 

Generation Z is the fastest-growing work generation. Gen Zers turn 26 this year. They focus on purpose-driven work at organizations with shared values and social causes. Like millennials, zennials demand a natural work-life balance. They want to contribute to employers that make the world a better place and invest in organizations offering professional growth, education, and promotion opportunities. 53% of Gen Zers demand remote work opportunities. 

Hybrid Work And Schedules are the Science-Backed Answer

Building a work culture and meaningful relationships across Slack, Zoom, and email is challenging. According to researchers at Harvard found undeniable benefits in working together face-to-face. A recent study found that collaboration, innovation, and employee satisfaction improve when employees are in the office a few days a week. These insights sparked an exciting examination of what the workweek and workplace should look like in a disruptive digital age.

Fast Company partnered with Choudhury and developed the idea of the 40% Office. Based on Choudhury research, 23-40% is the perfect time for coworkers to spend in the office in person. The 40% time spent in the office meets business needs while supporting performance and mentorship and empowering greater employee retention with flexibility. 

Instead of forcing employees back into the office, this approach finds the perfect blend between remote and on-site work. And the 40% quantity isn’t an exact science. Employees’ time in-office will vary by business goals, meeting frequency, and company culture.

You Could Be Saving 40% On Office Space Too

When you have office hours nailed down, rather than having a half-empty office most of the time, you can build out your office with sharing spaces in mind and split a lease with a second business that runs on a parallel work schedule. Because now is the time to change how we think about leasing and using office space.

Underutilized space can be an opportunity. Employers can explore unique partnerships with other organizations, leasing or sharing space as business needs evolve. Utilizing sharing apps and storage spaces that can convert into personal offices are great ways to make working spaces flexible.

Building the office around diverse spaces can help employees interact more often on-site and mix with colleagues from different departments. LinkedIn headquarters is the perfect example, with more social and team space and 50% fewer desks than pre-pandemic.

Choudhury’s patent office study found that remote employees in the same city frequently meet on the fly to socialize, talk about work, and share advice—showing the value of face-to-face time with other remote workers. Bringing these dynamics into play means moving away from structured open office layouts and cubicles to coworking spaces, satellite office locations, and a wide array of meeting rooms.

Going off the grid to cabins or other remote locations can be the perfect backdrop for town halls, retreats, and onboarding for companies with fewer offices and expansive geographical footprints.

Think About A 4-Day Work Week

A substantial 4-day workweek movement is gaining momentum with support from business thought leaders and elected officials. After a recent trial of employers experimenting with a 32-hour work week, workers shared improvements to their mental health, sleep, stress levels, and personal lives. Meanwhile, revenue jumped an average of 35% compared to a similar time frame from years prior. 

At the end of the experiment, employees reported various benefits related to their sleep, stress levels, personal lives, and mental health, according to results published Tuesday. Companies’ revenue “stayed broadly the same” during the six-month trial but rose 35% on average compared to similar periods from previous years. Meanwhile, resignations and sick days decreased.

The 4-day work week can also complement the 40% hybrid workplace approach—enabling employees to work one or two days on-site and two to three days from home.

Have more questions? Staffing Strong has answers.

At Staffing Strong, from recruiting to retaining and developing your talent, we’re here to help. Our talent specialists constantly examine how to engage employees and attract top talent. Contact us today to schedule a consultation. 

Meet the Author

Evelyn Vega is the Founder and President at Staffing Strong and the Past President of the Phoenix American Marketing Association. Since 1999, she’s made her career about supporting her clients in building meaningful careers and partnering with businesses in finding quality hires. In her free time, Evelyn sits on various advisory boards and enjoys practicing on her drum set!

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