UK women outpace men in finding healthy work-life balance

New research into the up-take of flexible work reveals that when it comes to juggling the personal and professional, working women have the upper-hand.

Women are multitaskers; or so goes the old adage. New research into the up-take of flexible work reveals that when it comes to juggling the personal and professional, working women have the upper-hand.

Working women organise their time, tasks and diaries more efficiently, according to a survey of 2,000 UK professionals by Polycom. The research suggests that women are less likely to let work interrupt valuable time off. UK men, however, are a third more likely to be interrupted by work and join a conference call while on holiday or during a family event.

That said, more professional women than ever before are taking part in conference calls in taxis, trains and buses whilst on the move. Whereas, men are more likely to have attended a conference call onboard a plane.

“Technology, such as video and audio conferencing solutions, enable us to connect and collaborate with our colleagues around the world from anywhere. However, it is important that we manage our workload so as not to infringe on valuable down time. We can’t always tally diaries with those of our colleagues, but quality time off is absolutely critical to mental wellbeing and maintaining a healthy work-life balance,” Tim Stone, Polycom’s VP of marketing EMEA, said.

According to the Polycom study, UK professionals spend 30 hours on conference calls per year and take part in five virtual meetings a month – each lasting on average for half an hour. One in five have participated in a work conference from home in pyjamas.

One bold worker in every hundred has even used a conference call to resign from their job. In contrast to this one in ten UK professionals has attended a job interview via video.  Again, UK women are leading the way in the adoption of new working methods, with a third more women stating they have met a potential new employer this way.

“The UK workforce is getting ever more mobile, with two-thirds now working from home at least once a month. As businesses and their employees adopt flexible working styles, we all need to make sure that we draw clear boundaries. With the right culture, policies and technology in place, this should be easily achievable,” Stone added.

While working from home, a fifth of UK workers camp out in their gardens for conference calls. The adoption of video conferencing continues to rise – with just over half of conference calls now being made from outside the traditional office. Polycom attributes this workplace shift directly to the increased ease-of-use and quality user experience of collaborative and conferencing tools.

Praseeda Nair

Kellen Rempel

Praseeda was Editor for GrowthBusiness.co.uk from 2016 to 2018.

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