There are no hard-and-fast rules on what constitutes the ideal healthy work-life balance. The measure of what is acceptable in your organisation will depend on the operational requirements of your business and the needs of your employees.
Flexible working practices to promote healthy work-life balance
Employers can use some of the following methods to positively address work-life balance in their business, including:
- part-time working - see considering requests to change working hours
- introducing job-sharing
- employees working from home
- self-rostering - allowing employees to choose which shifts to work
All employees have the right to request flexible working. For a full explanation of the types of flexible working and the advantages, see flexible working: the law and best practice.
Other flexible working arrangements
Other policies that make it easier for employees to balance work and their private lives include unpaid career breaks and paid sabbatical schemes. These are a cost-effective way to retain valued staff or reward those with long service.
Allowing your employees extra days off work - whether paid or unpaid - can improve their work/life balance. Holiday purchase schemes enable employees to buy additional - usually limited - holidays on top of their annual entitlement.
You could consider giving employees maternity, paternity, adoption or parental leave in excess of the statutory minimum, eg higher pay or longer leave.
These schemes give employees a measure of control over how their working lives are organised and foster greater employee loyalty and commitment.
Making the working environment more attractive
Improvements to the working environment can boost morale and help you retain valued staff.
Typical techniques include:
- free exercise or well-being classes
- a free or subsidised canteen
- company days out
- childcare vouchers - see set up a childcare voucher scheme
- funding and/or time off work for training and certain job-related duties and activities