Survey: A Window Into Windowed Work in Canada

64% of Employees Who Time Block Their Day See Improved Productivity

Toronto, ON. — For many workers, flexible schedules have gone from being a perk to a necessity during the pandemic, and new research from global staffing firm Robert Half suggests it’s a positive trend. Three-quarters (75 per cent) of office professionals surveyed in Canada said their job allows for windowed work, or the ability to break up their day into distinct chunks of business and personal time. Of those respondents, nearly two-thirds (64 per cent) reported the arrangement leads to greater productivity.

“Optimal work hours don’t look the same for everyone. As one option for greater flexibility, windowed work arrangements allow companies a very tangible way to help their staff better balance professional demands alongside personal commitments,” said David King, senior district president of Robert Half in Canada. “By giving employees the freedom to choose when and where they work, organizations can offer their staff greater control over their time, productivity and, ultimately, their overall happiness.” 

“Ongoing and open communication with workers is key for managers considering flexible work arrangements,” added King. “By taking the time to understand their individual employee’s productivity preferences and scheduling needs, employers can integrate options that resonate with everyone, without compromising business priorities and goals.” 

Robert Half offers four additional tips for managing flexible schedules:

  1. Coordinate team coverage. Someone in your department should be available during core business hours to respond to requests.
  2. Identify your power hours. When do you reach peak productivity: the early morning, late afternoon, or evening? Carve out quiet time to tackle high-priority tasks when you tend to hit your groove.
  3. Set wide windows. Bouncing between tasks can be inefficient. Cluster activities that require similar effort and resources, and block off hourlong increments, or longer, to get them done.
  4. Schedule and share your calendar. Make sure your colleagues know when you’re available to meet and collaborate — and when you’ll be less accessible or offline.

About the Research

This online survey was developed by Robert Half and conducted by an independent research firm from May 14-19, 2020. It includes responses from more than 500 workers who are 18 years of age or older and normally employed in an office environment in Canada.

About Robert Half

Founded in 1948, Robert Half is the world’s first and largest specialized staffing firm. The company has more than 300 staffing locations worldwide and offers hiring and job search services at roberthalf.ca. For additional career and management advice, visit the Robert Half blog at roberthalf.ca/blog

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