Report: More Michigan Companies Offering Flexible Working Arrangements

Flexible working arrangements are becoming more commonplace in Michigan as work/life balance becomes a bigger concern and technology advances, according to the American Society of Employers’ first Workplace Flexibility Survey.
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work life balance
Michigan businesses are offering more flexible working arrangements as technology and workforce culture change, according to the American Society of Employers. // Stock photo

Flexible working arrangements are becoming more commonplace in Michigan as work/life balance becomes a bigger concern and technology advances, according to the American Society of Employers’ first Workplace Flexibility Survey.

“Companies big and small are realizing that they need to offer flexible workplace arrangements to suit various employee needs and remain competitive,” says Mary E. Corrado, president and CEO of the society. “Our data shows that a majority of Michigan employers offer flexible solutions for employees. New technologies that enhance communication and collaboration have removed some of the barriers that existed in the past.”

A majority of responding organizations – 66 percent – offer some kind of flexible work arrangement. The most prevalent arrangement is flexible hours or flextime, with 83 percent of employers offering it. This was followed by telecommuting at 62 percent and allowing part-time schedules at 46 percent.

Of organizations that use flexible hours or flextime, 96 percent allow employees to have varied start and end times. However, 79 percent require employees to be present for core hours.

Telecommuting arrangements are at the discretion of the manager 79 percent of the time and offered on an ad-hoc basis 77 percent of the time.

Of those who use telecommuting, 54 percent of respondents use collaboration software and another 52 percent use video conferencing. Instant messaging is used by 75 percent of those surveyed.

Paid parental leave beyond Family and Medical Leave Act requirements, short-term disability, or what is required by law, was offered by 11 percent of organizations. Most organizations gave parents and adoptive parents full pay while on parental leave.

About 18 percent of organizations offer summer or seasonal hours, and 38 percent use a compressed workweek, the most common arrangement of which is working four 10-hour days.

There were 173 survey participants. Organizations with one to 500 Michigan employees made up 85 percent of the survey sample, while organizations with 501-1,000 employees made up 5.8 percent. The remaining 9.2 percent of the sample comes from organizations with more than 1,000 employees.

About 41 percent of the participants are automotive suppliers, and almost 80 percent of the sample are in metro Detroit.

Copies of the 2018 Workplace Flexibility Survey are free for society members and $525 for nonmembers. Those interested can obtain a copy by emailing surveys@aseonline.org or by calling (248) 223-8051.

The American Society of Employers is a nonprofit trade association that was founded in 1902.

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