Who should decide when and where to work?

Author Professor Isaac Getz

February 12, 2018

Judging by the number of procedures and memos in most organisations, it is HR departments who help decide when and where people should work. By saying this to employees, companies broadcast a strong implicit message: “Work is where and when you are – not what you do”. This can lead to “presenteeism”, which costs companies even more than absenteeism.

Ensuring the employee is at his/her desk for 8 hours guarantees nothing but sitting. How can this change?

Chronic disengagement

This was invented during the Industrial Revolution in the Midlands and Scotland. It led to the outstanding increase in economic standards of living, which has multiplied 20-fold between 1825 and 2001. It also led to the chronic employee disengagement. According to Gallup, 68% of UK employees are disengaged, coming to work “in order to leave”, and 21% are actively disengaged.

One way in which HR often address the low engagement level is through work/life balance (WLB). Employees are provided with arrangements and perks which improve their lives: flexible work hours, work from home, leaves of absence, even sabbaticals. And thus, a full loop is closed: from HR procedures deciding for employees when and where to work, WLB decides for them when and where to live.
You can read the full article here.