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Flexible working targets smashed: our latest social impact report

As a social business, we measure the impact of our work against clear social objectives, as well financial ones. Here’s a summary of our success.

By Melissa Jamieson, CEO, Timewise

Here at Timewise, we are proud to be a social business. We invest our profits back into our work, creating a virtuous circle in which we build on the insights we’ve gained to deliver better, more targeted solutions for our clients. And we share our learnings as widely as possible, to help drive change within and across as many sectors as possible.

As part of our social model, we set ourselves a suite of objectives against which we monitor the impact we’re having on businesses and individuals. And three years ago, we set some particularly ambitious goals, and committed to tracking our performance against them over time.

Targets smashed through our social mission

The outcomes are clear – and are set out in our latest social impact report , which also includes case studies and other feedback from businesses and individuals. But the topline summary is that we smashed our targets on all five measures.

For example, having set ourselves the challenge of working with 100 employers to influence their flex strategies and practice, we collaborated with 151. Having aimed to positively impact the lives of 1 million people through greater access to flexible working, we reached 1.7 million. And having a target of widening access to flexible working at the point of hire by posting 25,000 jobs on Timewise Jobs, we actually posted over 42,000.

What this means for individuals and businesses

So what does all this mean, overall? It means more individuals who want or need to work flexibly have been able to find a job to match their circumstances. For many people, such as those who are carers or have health conditions, this flexibility can be the difference between working or not. This in turn has a positive impact on societal issues such as child poverty.

It also means that more businesses now understand the role that flexible working plays within issues like talent attraction, retention, well-being and inclusion – and critically, understand what to do about it.

The result is a win-win-win scenario which benefits businesses and candidates alike. It increases the options for new candidates, and makes it easier for those already in work to move or progress, taking their flexibility with them. And it supports businesses to find, keep and nurture talented individuals, who are happier, healthier and more productive at work.

Our work is more important now than ever

We’re publishing this report at a time of great uncertainty. The jobs market is hugely unsettled; companies are battling with a skills crisis, and with a marked candidate shortage. And the cost-of-living crisis is making it more important than ever that we help as many people as possible find work that fits with their lives.

So, having proved over the last three years that our work has measurable impact, we want to see action on a greater scale. And we’re calling for a shared commitment from businesses, government and social funders to invest in innovative solutions that will help make good flexible work available to all.

We need government to build an infrastructure that supports flexible options. We need businesses to develop change programmes that create the right flexible jobs for their structure and their people. And we need social funders to get behind organisations like ours, so we can explore what works and share our learnings to drive wider change.

We’re here to help, in an advisory or a practical capacity; please get in touch if you’d like to know more. In the meantime, having smashed our three-year targets, we’re evolving our approach and developing a new suite of goals that match where we are now. We’ll update you all about this in the next few months; watch this space.

Published October 2022

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