Small firms bending over backwards

Smaller companies are leading the way in the adoption of flexible working practices and are starting to see it as a major advantage in the battle with competitors to attract and retain staff. Research suggests that 72% of small companies are now happy to allow staff to work remotely, compared with just 44% of larger British organisations.

The survey by telecommunications company Mitel also suggested that owners and managers of SMEs are more likely to lead by example, with 83% saying they would consider working flexibly themselves against just 63% of those in larger firms.

“Connecting home-based or remote staff with the central office is becoming more common as the UK is beginning to embrace new technologies that bring solid business benefits,” said Mitel’s EMEA managing director Graham Bevington.

“Remote staff can work from the company computer network and can take advantage of more advance applications such as online collaboration, video conferencing and online ‘presence’, which enables staff to identify where their colleagues are located and whether they are available. This is creating a more productive and happier workforce and is generating cost savings in return.”