HRM | FLEXIBLE WORK ARRANGEMENTS

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MGMT2008 Human Resource Management Introduction – Assignment 2
Flexible Work Arrangements: the “New Normal” or Does Face Time StillReign?
More and more employees are free to work outside of the office, usually facilitated by virtual
communication tools such as teleconferences, videoconferences and intranets with remote
log-in. Telework and flexible work schedules are the most commonly known and applied
workplace flexibility practices. Statistics from the American Community Survey (USCensus
Bureau) data show nearly 50% of the US workforce holds a job that is compatible withat
least partial telework and approximately 20-25% of the workforce teleworks atsome
frequency. The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS, 2011) estimates one in every 12 workers
(764,700) did more hours at home than any other single location in their main or secondjob.
Flexible work schedules are widely adopted phenomena that have been studied quite
extensively for their effects on individual and organizations. However, the research does not
lead to a simple one way is right and the other is wrong answer. Rather, it clearly establishes
that under certain conditions, remote working is in fact preferable, while it simply is notin
others. In other words, it all depends!
In fact, some organisations have taken a step away from such workplace flexibilitypractices.
For example, back in 2013, the then new CEO of Yahoo, Marissa Mayer, sent out aninternal
memo that employees would no longer be permitted to work remotely. The memo was
leaded to the press as an indication of the disquiet felt by many Yahoo workers, as well as by
those supporting flexible work arrangements. This memo has sparked a debate onwhether
remote working leads to greater productivity and job satisfaction or kills creativity and is just
a chance to slack off. Several companies decided to follow Yahoo’s move, for example,Best
Buy terminated its ground-breaking flexible work program Results Only Work Environment
(ROWE). These companies claim that while work from home was good for some workers, in
the macro scheme of consideration, such work arrangement slows down overall
productivity. Do you agree or disagree these companies’ change in terms of theirflexible
working arrangement?

 

CONVENTIONS OF ACADEMIC WRITING
The assignments must be typed on white A4 paper with 1.5 spacing, and a 2.5cm margin at the
top and bottom of the page, and on the right-hand and left-hand sides. You should use 12 point
font for the text (14 point font for headings, if you like), Times New Roman (preferred).
The assignments should be grammatically correct and well punctuated. As a tertiary level student, a
high standard of written English is expected. Your assignments should be clear, concise, neatly
presented, and easy to read. It is important for students to keep in mind that your essay needs to be
well structured and coherent such that it clearly communicates insightful and critical thinking in
relation to HR issues. Students are encouraged to use headings and subheadings in their essay.
Failure to comply with these requirements will result in a significant loss of marks.

Description

Over the years, the need for flexible working arrangements has been rising. The ever varying context of work is forming emergent problems and opportunities that organizations can address with the manner of swiftness that comes with flexible working plans. Conventional methods of working have become invalid due to the redefinition of work by fast globalization, advancement in technology, new values of society, and varying demographics (Chinowsky and Rojas 2013). Flexible work arrangement (FWA) is a term used to refer to any of the wide range of work plans that changes the time and/or place where work is performed regularly.

Some of the meanings of this term include adjustability in the planning of hours worked, such as different work plans and schedules relating to shift and break arrangements, adjustability in the number of hours worked including part-time job and work shares; and adjustability in the environment of work including working from ones residence or at a satellite branch. There has been an increasing desire in workers for permission to access different types of adjustable work arrangements with almost 80% of employees saying they would wish to have more adjustable work arrangements and would utilize such plans provided they do not have any negative effects at work (Crumpacker and Crumpacker 2007). This essay disagrees with the movement to cut down on flexible working options giving their positive and negative impacts on workers and employers. It also gives recommendation on creative solutions that organizations can adopt to minimize the negative effect of reduced collaboration and innovation.