Travelling to work isn’t always easy.
You may be one of the millions of people who face the daily reality of crammed trains, buses or trams, or driving and cycling in rush hour traffic. The stress of long commutes and the escalating costs of public transport can really take its toll on employees’ health and productivity at work.
But is there anything employers can do?
The answer is yes! Here are some key things you can think about which can help make your employees’ commutes that little bit easier:
Employee surveys are a good way to gather more information. You can find out what their average commute is and the challenges they face to get in and out of work. From the information obtained, you can pick up on certain trends and patterns which can help you define what next steps should be.
Think about your organisation’s policies
If the survey does show that people are struggling with the commute, you can think about reviewing your policies.
It’s important to think your policies through carefully to make sure they are fully fit for purpose. For instance, there is no point in trying to encourage your employees to cycle to work if you do not have all the appropriate facilities in place – you should ensure that you have a secure place to store bikes and you can provide showers and an area for employees to change into their work clothes.
Consider flexible working arrangements
When people think about flexible working, they often narrow it down to part-time working and home working. However, there is an abundance of other options you could think about, such as compressed hours, staggered hours, term-time working, job sharing and flexi-time.
Depending on the nature of your organisation and the role in question, you can consider what flexible working options could work best for them and you. For example, if they are really struggling with the rush traffic in the morning, could you let them come into work later? Will this have a significant impact on day to day operations?
Remember that employees with 26 continuous weeks of service with their employer have a statutory right to request flexible working. They can only make one statutory request per 12 month period. When an employer receives an application which meets all the qualifying requirements, employers must consider the request in a reasonable manner and in a timely fashion and can only refuse a request for a stated business reason.
Promote car sharing
If you don’t have enough parking for everyone, you could consider providing incentives to colleagues to share a ride to work and back. Not only will this reduce the number of cars in the car park, but you will also be doing your bit for the environment.
Offer financial support
A popular way to financially help employees is a loan for train or bus tickets, but you can explore other ways to help employees with the costs.