Employers Urged To Be Flexible In Arranging Work Hours

Story Highlights

  • A call has been made for employers to be flexible in arranging work hours for employees as new trends are indicating that where such arrangements exist, there is increased productivity and worker satisfaction is high.
  • The call came from Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, Hon. Phillip Paulwell.
  • Minister Paulwell cited a recent University of Chicago study, which found that a large number of workers said job satisfaction was materially higher when they had discretion over their hours and place of work.

A call has been made for employers to be flexible in arranging work hours for employees as new trends are indicating that where such arrangements exist, there is increased productivity and worker satisfaction is high.

The call came from Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, Hon. Phillip Paulwell, while delivering the keynote address at the opening of the Human Resource Management Association of Jamaica’s (HRMAJ) 35th Annual Conference on November 18, at the Knutsford Court Hotel in New Kingston.

Minister Paulwell cited a recent University of Chicago study, which found that a large number of workers said job satisfaction was materially higher when they had discretion over their hours and place of work.

“In order for employees to balance the demands of the workplace with enjoyment of being with friends and families, companies need to allow them to work flexible hours, and remotely,” the Minister told the conference.

Parliament has passed flexi-work legislation, which allows the workweek to consist of 40 hours, and all seven days of the week to be considered as possible normal working days. Overtime should be earned after the worker has completed 40 hours.

There will be no set eight or 10-hour workdays, but instead, these will be capped at a maximum of 12 hours.

The Minister, while highlighting the flexibility and growth that technology is adding to workplaces, noted that the flexiwork law is intended to enhance productivity and cost effectiveness within companies, improve customer service, enable workers to structure their lives through a flexible employee/employer work arrangement, and attract and foster a better investment climate.

“Technology is reshaping workplace flexibility by growing the sharing and on-demand economy, where workers have unprecedented autonomy over their hours of work,” he said.

He also cited the many benefits to organisations from Government’s investment in information and communications technologies (ICT).

The three-day HRMAJ conference will expose scores of HR personnel to the knowledge of local and international experts in the fields of management and communications under the theme: ‘Transforming Organisations…Executing Creative People Strategy’,

JIS Social