TAMESIDE Council staff are being told to adopt a more flexible working approach over the coming months, including doing so from home.
The authority has started pilot schemes involving children’s and NHS services, with a view to several departments working under the new approach from January.
That means some staff may work different hours, from different locations, in order to complete their roles.
The authority excepts some services and departments cannot change but in documents seen by The Correspondent, it says its aim is: “A hybrid working culture enabling colleagues to work at the location and time that suits their personal circumstances but ensures the objectives of our services continue to be delivered as a priority.”
A number of reasons were given for the latest approach, including increased productivity, increased workforce capacity and employee engagement, decreased absence, it supports the green agenda and reduces travel cost and the carbon footprint and a better work/life balance.
Five sites – Hyde Town Hall, Clarence Arcade in Hyde, Denton Festival Hall, Stalybridge Civic Hall and Ashton’s Tameside One – are the trial areas for the scheme.
That has seen them all have checks of their Wi-Fi capacity take place or a new network installed.
The document adds the: “Long-term plan has been to move to a hybrid model of working. However, going digital is not the right solution for all.”
However, some employees raised queries, including concern about how working from home would affect utility bills, health and safety in the home as well as the office and the need for further improvements in digital technology.