Two-third of Hong Kong professionals demands flexible working to seek better work-life balance. New research by global workplace provider Regus shows that the increasing need to improve employee work-life balance is driving up flexible working.
But businesses also have a strong interest in encouraging flexible working as it is seen as a way of creating agile organisations that are better able to cope with rapidly changing market conditions.
According to the research, it canvassed the opinions of over 44,000 business people from more than 100 different countries, including 349 business professionals in Hong Kong, 61% of respondents report that the need to improve work-life balance is driving an increase in flexible working.
The quest for better work-life balance in Hong Kong is more prevailing, with two-thirds of Hong Kong respondents (67%) reporting such pursuit of work lifestyle. This percentage is higher than those in other Asian countries, including Mainland China, Japan, Indonesia, South Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam.
The findings prove that the demand for healthy work-life balance is proportionate to work pressures people undertake – as most Hong Kong workers are overloaded based on Regus’ latest “overtime work” research, which revealed 14% of Hong Kong professionals put in an extra 15 hours of overtime work a week, Hong Kong professionals have higher demands for better work life balance.
Some 35% of Hong Kong respondents say they wish to work closer to home, while almost half of global respondents (48%) think that more workers, demanding the freedom to work flexibly and be closer to home is, driving up the frequency of flexible working.
But it is not only workers that benefit. As the survey shows, nearly half (44%) of businesses are moving towards flexible working in order to become more agile and better able to respond to market changes. Flexible working allows firms to expand or retract rapidly and without incurring hefty penalties.
Firms using flexible working are also better placed to attract talent from a wider pool, especially if they comply with best-practice employee flexibility standards.
Other key findings include:
“This research confirms that flexible working boosts efficiency and cuts costs. Businesses can reduce underused office space and operate in a more agile way, making decisions on a per-needs basis,” said John Wright, Chief Executive Officer of Regus Asia-Pacific.
“While the drivers for flexible working may differ for businesses and employees, both stand to gain. The fact that businesses are already benefitting from flexible working to increase their agility is good news. In addition, helping employees to find a more satisfying balance between their personal and professional lives creates a healthier and more productive workforce,” Wright added.
Also read: Hong Kong’s Top 10 Talent Trends for 2016
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