Work-life balance policies: the use of flexitime

23 September 2014

This study investigated the use of flexitime as a Work-life balance (WLB) policy and understanding employee perceptions regarding the use of flexitime among South African employees. A qualitative design with an exploratory approach was used. A non-probability purposive sample (n = 15) was taken in the financial sector. Data collection was done by was means of semi-structured interviews. Content analysis was used to analyse the data. Four main themes were extracted. The first two themes related to the various ways in which participants use flexitime and the influencing factors. Participants use flexitime according to their own preference (e.g., Spillover of working hours, dividing one's working day into smaller work hours, working from different locations) and were influenced by factors such as client's needs and expectations, own workload/pressure and personal commitments/responsibilities. The third theme related to various perceptions regarding the level of position of management, visibility and also personal life and situation. The last theme indicated that the use of flexitime have consequences, which include amongst others delay in work/deadlines, reduced productivity or performance, increased workload and health consequences.