Types of Flexible Work Arrangements

Flexible work options offer creative approaches for completing work while promoting balance between work and personal commitments. These arrangements involve the use of non-traditional work hours, locations, and/or job structures. Except in the case of conversion from full-time to a less-than-full time schedule, such as for a part-time assignment, the total numbers of hours worked and expected productivity remain the same.

Flexible Work Arrangements are not appropriate for every position, nor are they a guaranteed employee benefit. Factors to consider could include whether campus and operational continuity is jeopardized by working remotely, whether the employee can work productively with minimal supervision, whether the team performance is compromised with remote arrangements and whether there are clearly defined measurables that can be successfully accomplished with a Flexible Work Arrangement. 

Type of Flexible Work Arrangement




Flexible Work Schedule

  • Employee retains full pay and benefits

  • Employee’s working and time off hours more closely meet their needs

  • May facilitate recruiting and retention

  • May not provide supervision at all hours

  • May cause understaffing at times

  • May create difficulty in keeping track of hours

  • How office coverage will be maintained

  • How work hours will be tracked

  • Definition of tasks when supervisor is absent

  • What will constitute grounds for revoking a Flexible Work Schedule?


/Remote Work

  • Employee saves commuting time and costs

  • Enhanced productivity

  • Added option to assist employees with disabilities

  • Reduced absenteeism/healthier employees

  • Increased work/life balance

  • Reduced spontaneity of interactions that could negatively impact innovation/creativity

  • Fewer networking opportunities for employee

  • Not all employees may work productively in this arrangement

  • Possible equipment purchases/technology training

  • Not all jobs are performed easily off-site

  • How communication with coworkers and supervisor will continue

  • How much time will be spent in office and when

  • How to develop a culture of trust between supervisors and employees

  • What will constitute grounds for revoking Telecommuting/Remote Work

Compressed Work


  • Employees retain full pay and benefits

  • May reduce commuting time and costs

  • May reduce childcare and elder care costs

  • Provides a low cost employee benefit

  • Employee may not be as productive working a longer day

  • Employee may not receive supervision at all hours

  • May create challenges related to hours of child & elder care availability

  • May cause understaffing at times

  • How office coverage will be maintained

  • How to develop a culture of trust between supervisors and employees

  • Definition of tasks when supervisor is absent

  • How to coordinate schedules and communication

Examples of each type of Flexible Work Arrangement described above are contained in the Flexible Work Arrangement Planning Packet

Flexible Work Schedules/Flextime

A “Flexible Work Schedule” is a work schedule arrangement in which employees continue to work a full day but with varied work hours outside of the typical “8 to 5” work day.

Flexible arrangements are usually established with a set range of start and end times, and if required, core working hours when all staff must be at work. For example, employees may be granted the opportunity to start work between 7am and 11am, and finish between 3pm and 7pm. This would set the core hours as 11am-3pm, enabling employees to travel outside at least one of the peak periods.  Flexible Work Schedules are often combined with telecommuting.

Flexible work schedules allow employees to balance their work and home commitments, and to work the hours when they feel most productive. In addition, flexible work schedules help spread travel demand beyond conventional peak hours, and thereby reduce congestion on the roads and transit, as well as the time an employee spends commuting. 

Employees may have all sorts of responsibilities in their personal lives that don’t allow for a typical workday, such as dropping off or picking up children from school, going to doctor’s appointments, or running errands. When employees are free to get their personal objectives accomplished, while still working full time, they are free to focus on doing the job at hand, rather than worrying about their personal lives and how they’ll get everywhere on time.

Telecommuting/Remote Work

Remote work is an arrangement to work full time (100% remote)  from a site other than the primary UC Berkeley-provided workspace. Telecommuting is an arrangement for some part(s) of the employee's work or workweek to be performed at a location away from their UC Berkeley-provided workspace on a regular, recurring basis. These may be the most complicated flexible work options to arrange since they generally require coordination of schedules with other staff to make sure that on-site business needs are met. Employees working outside of the office can have “regular” office hours or a flexible work schedule. 

Compressed Work Schedule

A traditional 40 hour work week is condensed into fewer than five days of work. This option should only be extended to non-exempt (weekly paid) staff with clearly set maximum work hours.