Why flexible working is needed in the planning sector
Angie Jones & Myles Hooban, lead consultants at Penguin Recruitment, offer positive insights for town planners and employers who are considering flexible working.
Flexible working is becoming an increasingly sought after benefit when looking for a new role – but why is it so important?
It’s no secret that having a good work-life balance is an important factor for many individuals seeking new opportunities. Within the planning sector, one of the common concerns we see raised by town planners is the inability to work flexible hours, or to work from home.
For many, being able to work flexibly provides a unique opportunity to balance commitments at home without feeling like work is dominating their lives. For planners who enjoy regularly competing in sport, creative pursuits or simply socialising, flexible working can make the difference between being able to take part in a host of exciting activities outside of work and not.
More time for you
The average worker spends hours a year commuting to and from work, which can increase even more if you live in a large city.
By knuckling down in front of your home computer instead of commuting you’d most likely be saving at least an hour a day, which you can either apply to your work (impressing the boss with your productivity) or use to keep yourself fit and healthy by getting down the gym. In fact, the money you save on your commute could easily help pay for your gym membership.
Although certain tasks can only be completed in the office, there are certain applications and reports that can be completed from home. Giving the opportunity to do this encourages trust between planners and their employers, letting the employer know that they trust their planners to get it done, no matter where they are!
Happy staff are more productive staff. Everyone wants to feel like they are working for a flexible and inclusive company, and flexible working definitely demonstrates this. With the ability to work from home when feeling under the weather (or the increasingly likely snow day), staff can feel confident that their employers are considering their best interests. This can also be helpful when preparing for inquiries or pushing through time sensitive appeals, as longer hours on certain projects can be offset with the ability to make up the time flexibly. As such, staff are likely to feel happier and are less likely to seek opportunities elsewhere.
Supports family life
Flexible working is particularly beneficial for anyone raising a young family, and vital for parents who do the school drop off. With an increasing number of parents sharing family duties while working full time, the inability to work flexibly is the number one obstacle for parents juggling family life.
From hours of traffic jams to packed trains, it’s no wonder commuting is one of the most stressful events in people’s daily lives. Not only is stress not much fun, it’s also pretty bad for your health, so working from home can play a big part in reducing your overall stress levels by simply taking your daily commute out of the equation.
Greater job satisfaction
The freedom to manage your own time will build your confidence and increase your sense of responsibility for the role and business. This, in turn, will boost your feeling of ownership, making your job more rewarding and satisfying.
Encourages further study
Planning legislation and practices are constantly evolving, and with these changes the ability to work flexibly is increasingly needed to enable planners to fit their learning and development needs around work commitments.
The best companies attract the best candidates, and there is nothing better than a company that provides a valued, welcoming and flexible atmosphere that shows an interest in both an employee’s work, and interests. Offering flexible working makes a competitive package an exceptional one, as money and bonuses are great, but time is priceless.
Planning firms across the UK are currently offering flexible hours, and are feeling the rewards. Will you be next?
If you are looking for your next career opportunity in the planning sector, Penguin Recruitment is currently recruiting for a range of roles including:
- Principal town planner, Leeds
- Town planner, London
- Senior town planner, Manchester
- Associate director, town planning, London
- Senior/associate planner, Berkshire
- Town planner, Horsham