CUE Ltd Location Independent Working is a
scheme to enable staff to work outside of the office to help improve
work life balance, productivity and absenteeism
In 2002 the managing Director of CUE Ltd highlighted that staff occupied a whole floor of the innovation centre and was therefore restricting space available for business start-ups and constraining the technology park in their ability to create employment opportunities in the region. The managing director identified a need to reduce occupancy levels
and increase flexibility within the company and so the concept of Location Independent Working (LIW) was born.
The scheme offered employees an opportunity to work from an
alternative location other than the office, including the ability to work
from home and reduce occupancy of the innovation Centre. The main
objectives were to:
- Allow employees the flexibility of working hours and location,
thus improving work life balance
- Raise income generation in terms of profitability and facilitate CUE to deliver its primary aim of income generation
- Assist employees in meeting customer need if their requirements are outside “standard” working hours
- Become a more attractive employer
Policies and procedures for LIW were developed and a three-month
pilot of 10 employees commenced in October 2002. LIW was formally adopted and included the following key features:
- Staff commit to working remotely for 40-60% of the week
- Line manager approval must be gained
- LIW staff receive additional health and safety training
- Participants are briefed on relevant work-life balance techniques
- A three-month trial period
IT equipment for use at home.
Bespoke training in the use of LIW equipment prior to commencing the scheme.
Technical support to explore and practice alternative methods for communication and holding meetings (e.g.webcam).
Flexidesk rooms to be fitted with wireless printing an storage facilities.
Evidence of success
Data produced in 2003 confirmed that travel by 10 participants had decreased by 20 hours over a 12 week period and there was a 36% reduction in the use of the car park. LIW participants also avoid commuting and have more freedom to avoid congested periods. It also supports and encourages a paperless office environment, providing a platform which enables participants to work anywhere. All this including an increased office space efficiency reduces the organisation’s carbon footprint.
Whilst there are undoubtedly many positive aspects to agile working and flexibility, some staff members did feel that the boundaries between work and personal life were sometimes unclear.
Potential for learning or transfer
Similar schemes are now commonplace within the UK as organisations
are understanding the real benefits this gives to the workforce and the
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