Many employers still reluctant to hire flexible workers

Poll shows many managers are still reluctant to hire workers who want flexible hours, particularly those in larger SMEs, despite increased demand from candidates.

Women becoming rejected at interview after requesting flexible working


Over two fifths of managers are reluctant to hire people who want flexible working despite demand for it increasing, according to a new survey.’s poll of over 2,000 full-time workers, 750 of whom were managers or directors, found 59% of business managers and directors have seen an increase in employees demanding greater flexibility in their job (hours or location). Nevertheless, 60% have not made any changes to flexible working policies in the past year and 41% say they are reluctant to hire people who require or demand flexible working.  This figure increases to 60% amongst managers in mid-sized businesses (100-249 employees).

Forty one percent do not believe employees perform their jobs as effectively when they work remotely. Meanwhile, almost half (49%) feel they have to regularly check in on employees not working in the office to ensure they are being productive.

Among full-time employees, meanwhile, 39% consider their employer to have outdated work structures and practices and 42% do not think their employers care about their mental health.

Nic Redfern, Director of said: “It’s no longer good enough to offer employees a decent salary and an impressive company name on their CV. Employers must do more to attract and retain top talent, but our research shows that many are failing in this regard.

“Today, employees yearn for a healthier work-life balance and benefits that will nurture their mental and physical health. It’s surprising, therefore, so many managers are overlooking the benefits of flexible working.

“Working with employees to develop modern flexible working practices, which recognise the needs of both the individual and the business, can bring huge benefits. Not only can this build a healthier and happier workforce, it can also improve the organisation’s productivity.”

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