Agile working and COVID
Since COVID and the subsequent lockdown, many businesses have realised they can successfully and overnight adapt their working practices to anyplace and anytime. An urgent requirement for agile working forced even the most traditional of businesses to experience a seismic shift in attitude – from the most senior stakeholders to the most junior team members. Businesses have been required to embrace the latest technology and fast forward with digitalisation. As we enter the next stage of the COVID period, maintaining these high levels of versatile activity will continue to be business-critical.
What exactly is agile working and why is it different from flexible working?
Flexible working arrangements have been commonplace for some time. Once viewed as the domain of parents or carers – the flexible working landscape encompasses things such as flexible start and finish times, part-time working, job sharing, compressed hours, and splitting home working with office working.
Agile working goes significantly further than this and relates to the work that is being carried out, rather than simply the time and place it is being done at. Agile working promotes the use of the latest technologies and the sharing of knowledge and resources, enabling more efficiency and transparency between everyone at all levels within an organisation.
What are the benefits of offering agile working?
For businesses, agile working can improve staff retention and provides the potential to tap into a much wider and more diverse talent pool.
Many employees would like more autonomy over how they work. Research finds that employees who feel more in control of where, when, and how much they work tend to be happier and more productive. Agile working also reduces the stress and associated costs of the daily commute in a typical 9 to 5.30 office-based role.
It is clear that agile working will become something of a prerequisite for not only attracting the very best people but also retaining them.
Agile working in accountancy
With the right technology and resources in place, agile working becomes a viable option for most accountancy professionals. The good news is that accountancy lends itself well to agile working and those firms who embrace it culturally as well as having the cutting edge technology will have a competitive edge.
This year has seen an unprecedented need for businesses to be agile, and undoubtedly those who had already adopted a more agile way of working with the correct technology in place were able to adapt seamlessly during COVID and the Lockdown. Many businesses, however, have had to update their digital processes and adopt significant cultural changes to ensure the transition to a viable remote working culture.
Staying ahead of the curve and planning for 2021, there is a real need for businesses to actively embrace further agile working – this will lend itself to some serious planning and investment of resources for necessary events such as remote onboarding, learning including CPD training and professional mentoring.
Businesses need to ensure staff and clients alike remain at the epicentre. When truly embraced at all levels, agile working will enable businesses to achieve a client focussed organisation which is modern and innovative. And very importantly these businesses will have the edge over recruiting the best talent.
Director, Fletcher George Financial Recruitment
Fletcher George is an independent finance and accountancy recruiter working, primarily with finance and accounting professionals in South West London and Surrey including the Hampshire and Sussex borders. We recruit for both Public Practice and also for commercial businesses in the local area.
For more information, please contact Lisa on 01372 364 160 or by email: email@example.com