Baker Stuart’s Insight: This article, from a lecturer in Organisational Behaviour at The University of Liverpool Management School, argues that we need to question some of the assumptions about how work is organised in order to forge better organisations. She argues that current organisational practices (the 8 hour, 5 day work week) are outdated and often do not represent an efficient or sustainable use of human resources, and argues for flexible work as a possible solution.
The Women and Equalities Select Committee recently estimated that a failure to use women’s skills is costing the UK £36 billion a year . This is clearly a problematic issue that we need to address as a society, but it isn’t just the skills of women that are being underutilised.
It is the skills of anyone who cannot, for whatever reason, conform to the standard definition and organisation of work.
The eight hour, five days a week model of work was created and established, for all the right reasons, over a century ago.
Prompted by the industrial revolution, the “eight hour movement” played a critical role in encouraging healthier working conditions. Since then, the organisation of paid work has increasingly reflected the rationalisation of time into quantifiable units and as a resource that can be bought and sold.Yet we must consider that, any arrangement created […]