Both Marzena and I mostly dedicate our blogs to topics where words count more than numbers. At the same time, we are totally aware that money is a key factor behind most of our needs. Work-life balance doesn’t come for free. Quite the opposite – it is purely an investment transaction—both on an individual and organisational level. But on the whole, this kind of investment is not a blind shot – you will win. And companies profit, too.
As businesses usually strive to be very careful when making investment decisions and precisely measuring everything, we can already find a lot of numerical evidence that a focus on work-life balance when considering workplace solutions brings profits and reduces unnecessary costs.
It positively impacts employee recruitment and retention:
- Arup Laboratories, a Medical and Testing Reference Laboratory, has reported that offering flexible scheduling has helped them to more than double their employee base from 700 in 1992 to 1,700 employees in 2004 whilst reducing turnover from 22% to 11%
- At British Telecom, thanks to flexibility, annual staff turnover fell to below 4% (average 17 % – average for the sector).
- SC Johnson (New Zealand) improved staff retention as a result of work-life initiatives and is saving the company more than $200,000 a year. (www.worklifebalance.com, 2004)
It increases employee engagement and performance:
- Pfizer Canada reported a 30% increase in productivity in its translation department when employees were provided with opportunities for teleworking.
- In 2006, 75,000 British Telecom employees were working flexibly. Improvement in yield for these workers was around 21%, which translated into £6 million.
- 25% of IBM’s 320,000 employees who telework save the company $700 million in unreal estate costs.
Reduces the various costs associated with work-life imbalances (absenteeism, lateness, employee turnover, etc.):
- According to research conducted by Harvard Business Schoolin the US, the psychological and physical problems of burned-out employees cost an estimated $125 billion to $190 billion a year in healthcare spending in the United States.
- Estimation of the costs of absenteeism due to high work-life conflict in Canada have been estimated to be up to $10 billion a year (Duxbury and Higgins 2003).
Work-life balance solutions serve everybody. The critical point is, however, to plan investments wisely. Not every solution is applicable (or necessary) in every organisation or each life. I will come back to this issue in my future blogs. Stay tuned 😊.
Resources: Lazar I. Corduta O., Ratiju P. (2010) The Role of Work-Life Balance Practices in Order to Improve Organizational Performance. Pranav N. (2010) Overview of Work-Life Balance Discourse and Its Relevance in Current Economic Scenario. Malik M., Wan D., Dar L., Akbar A. (2014)The Role Of Work-Life Balance In Job Satisfaction And Job Benefit