flexible working64% of workers are more likely to stay with employers who offer flexible working. But, two in five (43%) believe their employer values results over their health and wellbeing. The number of employees who derive personal satisfaction from work and the number of employees who would say they work somewhere ‘friendly’ have both dropped from the responses given in 2016. The news comes from Aviva’s Working Lives report, and Unique IQ, says it highlights a need for more managerial trust and better workplace management.

“The nine-to-five culture is dying,” says David Lynes, Director of UniqueIQ, the parent company of IQ:timecard. “Managers expect their workers to be able to attend to weekend emails or work emails first thing, but in return workers don’t feel they can ask for more flexible hours. Consequently, people are working longer for the same rate of pay, missing out on things like doctor’s appointments or school pick-ups, because they think their manager will deny their request.”

According to Aviva’s study, despite the clear benefits of offering flexible working, just over one in five (21%) employees say they have not even initiated a conversation about the potential for flexible working because they think their boss will say no. Among different age groups, those aged 35-49 are least likely to have been able to work flexibly when they have asked (39%) and are likely to be most fearful of making an initial request (24%).

Since working too many hours without getting anything back from employers is a recipe for good workers burning out, managers need to be the ones to initiate change. They need to ask why they work in a culture which does not feel open to their employees, and also if they are likely to deny flexible working requests.

IQ:timecard heralds a new approach to remote workforce management. If managers are scared that work will not get done if they grant flexible working requests, they could trial software that tracks worker’s output, gives realtime alerts, and helps tech adoption in the workplace.

Unique IQ says that if management are open about adopting a system that facilitates flexible working, workers will feel safer requesting it without fear of it being denied. Ultimately, helping to create a more transparent workplace culture.