“Fragmented work”, a new way of life born from covid

Press review of the French business daily Les Échos.

Work three times three hours a day to stop jogging, doctor appointments, and kids’ homework? Telecommuting often allows for a better balance between professional and personal life.

Employees who can carry out part of their functions remotely, but who have also changed the time slots in which they carry out their work.

The pandemic is bringing to light a new range of working models: remote, flexible office, but also what sociologists and other business observers call: “fragmented work day”. Thus, not only, since 2020, employees who can perform part of their functions remotely, but also the time slots in which they carry out their work have changed.

“The times (dedicated to family, leisure and work) are confused when working from home, because there is more an obligation of results than of means. When you’re in the office, sometimes you just leave your post to go for a run or go to the doctor,” observes HR researcher Caroline Diard (ESC Amiens).

Faced with a workforce in search of flexibility and autonomy, these non-linear weekdays are bound to gain popularity. In a study conducted by McKinsey in July 2022 of more than 13,000 workers around the world, 40% of them stated that flexibility at work was one of the main motivations for staying in their position.

This fragmentation goes in the direction of equality between men and women.

Julien Fanon (Accenture) takes over the risk of increased interpenetration between an employee’s personal and professional world, and psychosocial risk that this represents, and calls for safeguards to be put in place. He also believes that this fragmentation towards equality between men and women: “it is a way of changing mentalities in the company, parents can also free up time for personal limitations in their professional agenda”.

Greater flexibility is also often synonymous with higher productivity. Instead of logging in for eight hours at a time at fixed times, employees can set their own work schedules to be more productive and/or more creative based on their personal life or natural biological rhythm, instead of being cooped up at fixed and continuous schedules. contractual hours.

For Caroline Diard, this “à la carte” division is positive, as it gives flexibility to employees, but she also warns that not everyone is in the same boat: “we run the risk that some hyperconnected employees end up in burnout, because they don’t know how to stop working.

This article, published in the echoeshas been summarized by us.

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