‘Flexi job prompt in job advert templates could increase new flexi roles’

Prompting employers to think about flexible working through offering them a flexi option in job ads makes them more likely to do so and get more candidates as a result, says a new study.

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Including a flexible working field in job adverts to prompt employers to think about flexible working makes them more likely to offer flexible new roles, according to an experiment run by the Government Equalities Office.

It ran two controlled trials involving more than 55,000 employers posting more than 200,000 job adverts on a large UK jobs site. The trials tested the impact of introducing a prompt in the job listing template which gave employers the option to advertise jobs with a choice of flexible working options.

This was compared to a business-as-usual model with no such prompt. The trial measured how likely they were to advertise flexible roles and whether flexible jobs attracted more applicants.

It found that employers exposed to the prompted choice page in the job listing template were 20% more likely to advertise their job with flexible working options compared to the control group. Preliminary findings suggest flexi hours was the most popular employer option, but there was an increase for all types of flexible working.


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Job adverts offering flexible working attracted 30% more applicants, although the study notes that this may be an
overestimate.

It concludes that the results show that small changes to job advert templates can encourage employers to advertise more jobs with flexible working options and that flexible jobs tend to attract more jobseekers.

Several employers, including Lloyds Banking Group, have sought to increase the number of flexible jobs by challenging recruiting managers who send in a job spec without a flexible option.  They say doing so forces managers away from defaulting to a non-flexible way of working. Such moves are often accompanied by extensive training of line managers in supporting flexible teams and flexible working toolkits which explain the benefits and challenges.



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