Need for Flexible Work Arrangements

What is Driving the Need for Flexible Work Arrangements?

For many employees—and employers— flexibility is a new part of the compensation package and is a powerful tool in terms of employee engagement, retention, and recruiting. 

Flexible schedules not only provide employees with job satisfaction, better health, increased work-life balance, and less stress, but they also benefit employers through higher productivity levels, decreased turnover, and reduced absenteeism. Flexible schedules and remote work options support the recruitment and retention of a diverse workforce, a key element of our commitment to equity and inclusion, and an integral component for innovation. Flexibility offers numerous benefits for employees and the University, ultimately enabling us to better serve the University’s mission.  

We can't deliver on the University's mission if we lose employees because of a refusal to be flexible. 

Benefits to the University

Increase employee engagement, productivity and retention

  • Flexible work arrangements are highly sought after by employees. 

  • More than two-thirds of UC Berkeley employees want them. 

  • Flexible arrangements lead to: reduced turnover costs, fewer absences/sick days, improved employee health, morale, engagement, and satisfaction, particularly among historically marginalized communities

Broaden the pool of available talent

  • Flexible work arrangements are a “must have” in our competition to hire the best available talent.

  • Remote work gives employers the option to hire from across the country and thereby increase the diversity and talent of the applicant pool.

  • The University can more readily hire part-time, semi-retired, diabled, caretaking, or homebound workers.

Use the workspace for efficiently and save money

  • The University can optimize its use of its limited office space and parking by offering remote work opportunities.

  • Flexible work can help defer the cost of some otherwise required abatement or improvement projects until the budget stabilizes.

Contribute to sustainability goals

  • Remote work opportunities can be used to reduce our carbon footprint by eliminating vehicle trips to University locations.

Ensure business continuity

  • Remote work allows employees to remain productive during emergencies, such as power outage or pandemic. 

Benefits to Employees

  • Reduce commute time, costs, and associated stress

  • Balance work and home life more easily (e.g., being able to schedule doctor, repair, and other significant appointments during the workweek)

  • More opportunities to exercise and eat healthily

  • Work when you are most productive

  • Work when and where you have fewer distractions

  • Provide dependent care

  • Ability to live in lower-cost areas without sacrificing time to commute

Benefits to the Broader Community

  • Decreased traffic congestion
  • Reduced air pollution
  • Greater commerce for local businesses in employees’ neighborhoods