Work-life blend: finding the balance
The way employees look at their work-life balance is changing. Many admit to dealing with work-related issues in their private time, but they do not seem to mind. In order for employees to make the most of both holidays and work days, employers have to strike the right balance. SD Worx surveyed 5,000 employees across Europe to gauge overall sentiment.
Working during holidays? Yes, but…
The numbers show general satisfaction with work-life balance due to the freedom of choice that has become part of it. We do not mind reading emails during the weekend or holidays if this means we get to pick those holidays freely.
A large majority of employers proved to be very lenient in this regard. Assessing the level of flexibility on issues such as working hours, work location and leave periods, the survey illustrated the greatest freedom in determining the latter. Choosing our own working location proved to be the most difficult, which is understandable as this is more closely related to the type of work performed.
Employers’ flexibility in terms of …
A win-win scenario
It should come as no surprise that employer flexibility determines employee satisfaction levels for work-life balance. What is more, satisfaction and engagement rates are booming amongst employees who are satisfied with their work-life balance, and they are also less inclined to change jobs. Thus, both employers and employees seem to profit from the beneficial effects of this sense of balance between work and private time.
The impact a good work-life balance has on employees
“We are still seeing work environments in which a great deal of change is needed to be able to provide that flexibility.”
– Hilde Haems, Chief HR Officer at SD Worx
Hilde Haems, Chief HR Officer at SD Worx Group, welcomes this recent work-life blend but emphasises that it should remain a personal choice: “The figures show that most employees do not have a problem with doing some work during their leisure time. Of course, the aim is not to get the pendulum to swing in the other direction either. A good balance is key.”
However, it is important for employers to be responsive to the needs of their employees. “We are still seeing work environments in which a great deal of change is needed to be able to provide that flexibility, whilst in others, too much flexibility has become a reason for concern”, says Hilde Haems. It is within this context that demands for the right to disconnect, no-email Friday or 30-hour weeks are becoming more and more visible.
About the survey
The Europe LTD survey polls participants on 100 work-related aspects relevant to employee satisfaction, motivation, involvement and engagement. SD Worx surveyed 5,000 employees across Belgium, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Austria and the United Kingdom. The sample is representative of specific local labour markets, with the same composition regarding statute, gender, region, work regime, language, education level and organisation size as that of the active labour population in the countries concerned.