Workers want more flexible hours

Almost 50% of Dutch workers would like to take a more flexible approach to their working hours, according to a survey by the information society platform EPN.

More flexible hours, such as working in the evening and weekend, would allow workers to better combine their career with their private life, the survey of 1,800 people found.
Of those polled, some 40% said they already have flexible hours, meaning that they often do overtime in the evening or during holidays. But 70% said they never work at home during traditional working hours.
And 45% said internet and other digital technology means they can work everywhere and this has boost enjoyment of their job. Only 10% said their private lives have suffered because of technological changes. And 25% felt uneasy if they cannot be contacted by phone or email after hours.
‘Employees have become modern, now it is up to companies,’ EPN director Tom van der Maas said in Wednesday’s Telegraaf. ‘Employer organisations are in favour, but managers are against flexible hours because too often they want to see and control their staff on the work floor.’
Van der Maas called on middle management to make the most of modern technology. ‘All the technical obstacles to teleworking – one of the solutions for rush hour traffic jams – have been removed,’ he said.
Rianne van Veldhuizen, an account manager for IBM who works flexible hours, told Trouw that she feels as if she is an independent contractor.
‘I don’t have a 9-5 job at the office,’ she said. ‘ One afternoon I am in Eindhoven, then I am on the phone late at night to a customer in America. Other times I work very early in the morning. Work and my private life mesh in a very natural way. It is very comfortable.’

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