Introducing a four-day working week!
We have embarked on an overhaul of our working practices by introducing a four-day working week for more than 300 of our employees.
The new plan – which sees our charity become the first social care provider in the UK to introduce the four-day week – allows head office and support function employees to condense their normal working hours into four days, rather than five – having either the Monday or Friday as a non-working day.
The move comes as we, amongst many other employers, look to respond to national research demonstrating a strong post-pandemic desire from employees to maintain a more flexible of working, now that the Government’s ‘Work From Home’ mandate has ended.**
This new approach aims to offer greater choice for our current employees, while also creating a more attractive offering for new recruits and delivering greater support to our frontline workforce, which operates over a 24-hour period.
We have further enhanced our shift to more modern and innovative ways of working by establishing a flexible return to the office, with colleagues having the choice to work either in the office, virtually from home, or a mixture of the two. Employees will only need to attend their offices for meetings or training that need to be held in person. This hybrid working approach will transform our office spaces into hubs used largely for learning and collaboration.
These flexible working measures come in response to feedback from our Support Function colleagues. In a series of recent surveys, 82% of colleagues felt positive about the move towards a 4-day working week and 81% expressed a desire to reduce the numbers of days in the office post-pandemic.
The move has been introduced across our Support Function teams initially, including departments such as Finance, HR and Quality, but the aim is that this will be rolled out further later in the year, with our operational teams having the chance to take part in the scheme too.
Teresa Exelby, Chief People Officer at Community Integrated Care said:
“Our colleagues have shown us how well they have adapted to a remote and hybrid working approach over the past 18 months, so we’re thrilled that we’re able to build on these successes as we navigate our way through the post-pandemic workplace.”
“Listening to our workforce is hugely important to us and it’s clear that employee expectation for a flexible approach has altered dramatically in recent months. This move has been built with our colleague’s voices at the heart of it, giving them the freedom to choose and build their own ways of working.”
She continues: “Our hope is that by ensuring that our colleagues can achieve a positive and healthy work-life balance, this will in turn boost the wellbeing and productivity of our workforce. Ultimately, our main goal is that this all leads to us to continue delivering the best lives possible for the people we support.”
Introducing flexible working is just one of a number of People-related initiatives that we have introduced to improve the working lives of our team. This year, we created brand-new Diversity & Inclusion and Wellbeing Strategies. We also launched a landmark campaign – Unfair To Care – unveiling research which analyses the role of a frontline Support Worker and for the first time ever provides empirical evidence to bust the stereotype that social care is a ‘low-skilled’ sector. We are now using the research to lobby the Government for fair funding and pay.
You can read the full report and find out how you can get involved at www.unfairtocare.co.uk
**The move to flexible working comes as a recent poll state that, “half of employees would quit without flexible working post-pandemic” (EY, Work Reimagined Employee Survey, 2021).