Flex Work Literature Review Gone Are the Essay

Download this Essay in word format (.doc)

Note: Sample below may appear distorted but all corresponding word document files contain proper formatting

Excerpt from Essay:

Flex Work Literature Review

Gone are the days of single-income households being the norm. The costs and other economics of today basically mandate that many families have both parents working and this leads to the need for day care, school transportation plans and other arrangements for things like doctor visits and school events. This can present a challenge if neither parent has a workplace situation has a job that is forgiving and understanding and allows for somewhat frequent (if not very frequent) quick breaks and extended lunch periods to deal with family affairs. Combine that with the fact that many employers are actively or hostilely resistant to flexible work arrangements under the auspices that it allows for or even encourages waste and misuse of time, then the problem is exacerbated even more. However, the author of this paper would assert that employers should be as understanding as they reasonably can be given the familial and other social obligations of their workers and a flexible work arrangement that is constructed and regulated properly allows for both working getting done on time and correctly while also allowing the parent/employee to fulfill their parental and societal obligations thus rendering satisfaction and security for all parties involved.

Statement of the Problem

The problem at hand is the sometimes adversarial relationship that exists between employees with parental or other familial obligations and employers who have major concerns about potential productivity losses through lack of continuity and work getting done in a haphazard or incomplete manner due to employees either having to leave and come back to the office a lot and/or the worker not being present and thus directly supervised in the office. Many employers try and fail to strike a balance while other employers go to one extreme or the other. An example of a policy and setup that is too lenient and too free-form was the recent Results-Only Work Environment (ROWE) that was used by Best Buy. The basic premise was that work could be done at any time and from any place and leave was unlimited with the implicit understanding that work would still get done and that results were really the only thing that mattered. The program was shuttered in 2013 when it became clear that the program's flexibility was not being used for its intended purpose, that being the allowance for people to spend more time on family functions and requirements. Instead, the policies were being appropriated to different motives and activities (Wong, 2013).

The other end of the spectrum was the recent decision by Yahoo Chief Executive Officer Marissa Mayer to completely ban telecommuting across the board because she said it was a major loss in productivity and corporate camaraderie to not have people on-site and thus have their progress and actions visible to the reporting parties. Given that technology firms are quite easily associated with work flexibility and the general practice of being able to be productive anywhere whether it be a remote office in general or out of one's home, this came as quite a shock to Yahoo employees as well as many corners of the United States and international media (Kolhatkar, 2013).

The problem to be solved is to have a balanced and reasonable policy that allows for home or remote-based workers and/or flexible work arrangements that allow for discretion and flexibility while at the same time not allow people to actively abuse the system and use the framework in a way that is clearly wasteful and pointless. Agency theory run amok leads to a near dictatorial approach from management at times. However, being too lax and pliable form a business policy and practice standpoint is practically begging for people to abuse and misuse the system. The idea that employees cannot go too far and take advantage of the family-friendly policies of businesses is a fallacy and this is literally proven every day by employees who have extremely misguided priorities and values. To say that corporations alone are guilty of over-reach and improper standards and behaviors in the flexible work dynamic is simply false on its face.

Intended Audience

This research paper should be receive and evaluated by anyone who is curious as what has been tried, what tends to work and what tends to blow up in one's face as it relates to flexible work arrangements. This would be useful to employees who, either now or in the future, would prefer to be able to have a flexible work arrangement and/or are curious as to how this would manifest itself. It would also be useful for anyone that thinks that corporations are heartless entities that care not about anything other than working getting done and within the desired frameworks. Corporations are made of people and those people have families and children of their own the vast majority of the time. Even so, when the aforementioned Yahoo CEO Mayer bans telecommuting but also has an in-office nursery, it is perhaps perceived by many (and probably rightfully so) that she is having her cake and eating it too. Some would argue that rank has its privilege and that Ms. Mayer has the right to expect the flexibility while others in a lower and less trusted position do not (Kolhatkar, 2013). However, many people that are at the lower levels of industry and corporate stature have families too and/or do not have the intentions or dreams to ever reach the upper echelons of corporate power yet they still want the ability to be the best family member they can be in terms of both providing and "being there." This report is tailored to those that believe in that and want to know what they will face in terms of options and challenges in meeting that goal. Of course, personal accountability is important when speaking people that work in a work-from-home or otherwise flexible work arrangement but employers absolutely have a burden as well.

Scope of the Investigation

The scope of what will be looked at in this report will be fairly basic. In short, what has worked and what has not worked in terms of corporate results will be assessed with a focus and goal of fixating on what is best for all parties involved. Solutions that allow for the necessary productivity while at the same time allowing parents to meet requirements like taking children for doctor or dentist appointments, dropping them off or picking them up from daycare or dealing with sicknesses or other emergencies should be the ones selected. Parents should not be punished for engaging in reasonable and ethical obligations but employees who are clearly abusing the system or are even just disruptive due to the flex work provisions being overused should be reined and made to comply with the same general standards as everyone else.

Value to the Audience

The value to the audience is an understanding and an embracing of the fact that while many jobs out there require physical presence in some manner or form, many other jobs including many service and professional sector positions can be done from just about anywhere with an internet connection and a computer. Other jobs still can be done at discretionary times and do not necessarily have to be done during a normal "9 to 5" shift. However, this flexibility, when offered, has to be accepted with at least some basic strings attached and allowing the proverbial inmates to run the asylum is just begging for abuse. People reading this work will be asked to understand that the employer/employee relationship relative to work obligations and arrangements should be a partnership and not based on being adversarial or acrimonious.

Focus on the Authors

Vanessa Wong's treatise about the failed Best Buy ROWE program was fairly illuminating. She stated that while there was a good perception of the program from the employees, there was no net effect in the amount of time that was spent with the children of the affected employees. This was verified by a study that found that both mothers and fathers spent the same amount of time, with no increase, than they did before the inception of the program. In addition, while the mothers in the study clearly felt good about the options afforded by the program, the same was not true for the fathers involved in the ROWE program. The amount of turnover was less than before and other activities were allowed for such as exercise and other fruitful pursuits were allowed for. However, the program was eliminated because it was not increasing family time and that was the original intent (Wong, 2013).

Another article reviewed for this literature review also focused on Best Buy's ROWE program and it also had a lot of good things to say about it. It found a clear reduction in turnover for employees that were participating in the ROWE program as compared to from before the program was offered and that his was true regardless of the gender, age or family life stage of the employee involved.…[continue]

Cite This Essay:

"Flex Work Literature Review Gone Are The" (2013, October 09) Retrieved December 9, 2016, from http://www.paperdue.com/essay/flex-work-literature-review-gone-are-the-124189

"Flex Work Literature Review Gone Are The" 09 October 2013. Web.9 December. 2016. <http://www.paperdue.com/essay/flex-work-literature-review-gone-are-the-124189>

"Flex Work Literature Review Gone Are The", 09 October 2013, Accessed.9 December. 2016, http://www.paperdue.com/essay/flex-work-literature-review-gone-are-the-124189

Other Documents Pertaining To This Topic

  • Work vs Life Balance the

    Wood indicates that "everyone has different motivations and aspirations that they wish to achieve in their life. Work-life balance is about adjustments that can be made to working patterns to enable people to combine work with the other facets of their life. Bratton and Gold (2003: 105) de-ne work-life balance as, 'the relationship between the institutional and cultural times and spaces of work and non-work in societies where income

  • Pros and Cons of Vmware

    Vmware Pros and Cons of VM Ware Over the last several years, the marketplace for servers and virtual machines has become an avenue many technology firms are focusing on. This is because these large devices are used to store tremendous amounts of data for cloud computing. One of the biggest companies is VMware. Founded in 1988, they have transformed how various products and services are delivered to cliental utilizing their computers,

  • Wal Mart Benefit Plan Analysis Wal Mart

    Wal-Mart is also deemed to be a company that greatly mistreats and discriminates against its employees but there has apparently been no reliable empirical data to back that up (Van Riper, 2008). The article concludes by conceding to some Wal-Mart critics. First, Wal-Mart cites Ohio University professor Richard Vedder, who points out that Bureau of Labor Statistics Data holds that Wal-Mart's wage structure lags behind the retail sector as a

  • Influence of 2007 Economic Crisis on American Car Market

    2007 Economic Crisis on American Car market Effect of the 2008 global economic crisis on automotive industries Crisis in the United States Crisis in Canada Crisis in Russia Crisis in European markets Crisis in Asian markets Effects by other related crisis events In this paper, we will review the effects of 2008 global automotive crisis. Our main focus will be on the American car manufacturers and the negative impact they suffered due to the crisis. We will

  • Human Resource Management and Ethics

    Ethics, Human Resources, Management Discuss the ethical issues that need to be considered when you (1) design a research project, (2) collect data, and (3) analyze and report data. When a research project is designed, data is collected, and then the data is analyzed and reported, there are a number of ethical issues that have to be carefully considered. Unfortunately, many researchers who are inexperienced are not clear on how they should

  • Predatory Lending and the Subprime

    And we must take into consideration what would happen if, somewhere down the line, we encountered the very real possibility of changed financial circumstances. The financial knots we're tying ourselves into now, as we scramble to purchase homes and wind up owning less of them, can have serious long-term ramifications. Because today's overall tighter finances often necessitate putting off major purchases, many adults don't buy their first home until they're

  • Market Orientation of Medical Diagnostic Units Dissertation

    Market Orientation of Medical Diagnostic Units Dissertation for Master of Health Administration i. Introduction ii. Objectives iii. Description iv Administrative Internship v. Scope and Approach vi. Growth vii. Methodology viii. Hypothesis ix. Survey Questionnaire x. Research Design xi. Observation and Data Presentation xii. Test provided xiii. Analysis of findings Marketability of Patient Satisfaction Importance of Employee Satisfaction xiv. Conclusions and Recommendations xv. Bibliography xvi. Notes xvii. Appendices Market Orientation of Medical Diagnostic Units


Read Full Essay
Copyright 2016 . All Rights Reserved