Coming from a team of recruitment consultants that speak to industry professionals every day, the one request we see most often from Block Managers is having the ability to work from home or have flexi hours. Being able to tick this box for candidates, results in a guaranteed hire.
Being open to this new way of working gives employers a competitive edge when trying to secure the best talent on the market. There are different options you can offer, whether it be as simple as offering time in lieu for evening AGM’s, flexi time - the chance to start earlier and finish earlier or vice versa, the ability to go and pick up their children from school on a Friday afternoon, being able to work one or two days from home with the remainder being office based or full blown remote working.
What are the benefits to the employer for adopting this model?
- A larger selection of candidates to choose from in the hiring process
- Home working often appeals to more senior candidates with a stronger skillset
- Your employee may feel happier, more valued and respected. They will feel as if they have more autonomy and are trusted individuals within the team.
- Focused working is often achieved from home, with less office distractions or politics, they will be able to get going straight away without worrying about their morning commute, equalling a higher output from your employees
- Employees achieve more of a work-life balance. Happy employee’s means your staff retention rates increase, equalling happy leaseholders and retained business
- Employees stress levels decrease, which means they are making better judgement calls in work activity
- Lower overhead costs, due to smaller office space required
- You are not geographically limited as a business
What are some of the concerns that we hear from employers?
- How do you know they are working?
- They won’t work as hard as they would in an office
- They won’t integrate and be a part of the team
- I like to manage my team closely to get the best out of them
These are all legitimate concerns. Employing people means building up trust in them and they need to feel trusted by you to enable a healthy, happy working relationship. With good management and accountability there is no reason why remote working shouldn’t work in Block Management. Looking at their performance, the way their portfolio is managed and having regular appraisals or one to ones, where expectations are set and met by employees keeps them engaged and forms an important part to being able to make this model work. Having a management style that is more about progress made rather than activity done can be a healthier approach to achieving employee engagement.
Team integration, training and communications is certainly something you will have to consider. It’s not the same business model and therefore requires a different approach, but it certainly isn’t impossible with the technology we have now, it just requires creative thinking.
Why not ask yourself these two simple questions - What do you want from your Property managers at the end of the day? Do you measure your team by how many extra minutes they work, or where they are based, or do you judge them by their performance and results? Let’s face it you will soon hear if a leaseholder isn’t happy.
As the industry continues to evolve and change and it becomes increasingly difficult to attract high quality candidates in a truly competitive market, is it time to change the way you think about remote and flexible working?
For more information, guidance or advice on looking at changing the way you employ staff or if you want to find a more flexible role, then make sure to get in touch.