Finding the right combination in your personal and professional life is a basic need of any employee. This balance can be achieved through a flexiworking system: a way of working that improves our workforce’s efficiency and productivity, promoting flexible work hours, telework and work-life balance.
"Flexibility" and "work" were two irreconcilable words until not long ago. Now, many companies have made it a priority to bring them together to improve employees' lives. At Santander, because we are aware of this need we are focusing our efforts on facilitating the reconciliation of our employees' work and family life. To this end, we have adapted to the times and to new technologies through work systems that allow our employees to work efficiently while adapting to the needs of their personal lives.
To view and understand work like this, we had to listen to a proposal made by one of our employees. Teresa Sáenz-Díez, an employee with more than 20 years' experience at the Group, spoke of flexiworking through the "Santander Ideas" initiative, a platform that we created to give employees the chance to share ideas for improving the bank overall. We have thus made it possible to work at our company just as before, but with a better work-life balance.
A new way of working
The main characteristic of flexiworking is that it gives employees greater flexibility and autonomy so that they can organise their work more conveniently. Work is no longer measured solely in terms of the amount of time spent but also according to objectives and results, enabling employees to perform their functions remotely or to choose their workdays.
"Since applying flexiworking to my work life, I have noticed that I am much more relaxed and less stressed. I don’t commute at rush hour, and I spend more time with my children. You come home and you can continue working, which makes you feel freer," says Ms Sáenz-Díez.
But the concept of flexiworking goes beyond being able to set your own schedule. It is a way of ensuring employee well-being and improving employee health by allowing people to reduce fatigue and stress, mitigate long periods of sitting down and have greater control over their lives. “You feel better, healthier, so you can do a much better job,” says Ángel Catalán, a team leader, who applies flexiworking in his day-to-day work.
In last year's Global Engagement Survey, 82% of our employees indicate that their line manager helps them achieve a reasonable work-life balance. In addition, 84% of our employees state that their line manager allows flexibility measures to be adopted in the work team.
The world of work is changing. Companies must motivate their employees, both to retain talent and to improve results. For us, flexiworking is one of the solutions for achieving this motivation. It is a commitment to a simple, agile culture, to listening to workers and to achieving more communication among people. All in all, it means improving our employees' lives and our company.