The challenges of shift pattern changes
Working in central London provides fantastic employment opportunities with international market leaders and attracts job seekers for whom career challenges, opportunity and kudos are important components in their search for the perfect job.
Global companies’ staffing strategies have to be flexible and innovative to ensure they attract and retain the best talent whilst maintaining & increasing their market share. Additionally, the demanding commercial times we are experiencing means that the 24/7 work pattern is an ever increasing employment reality.
In some instances, technology means that many of us are able to work remotely but some job roles are just not suited to this set up. This is typically so in firms which are heavily regulated, have complex CRM, CMS, IT systems or deliver work that does not easily lend itself to working from home. It is a given that to achieve business goals in 2012, firms must keep delivering, regardless of the time locally. Increasingly, when many people are thinking about their journey home, others are waking to start the beginning of their working day.
Shift work traditionally is the domain of blue collar workers, however there is an increasing number of office workers for whom working on a regular shift pattern is a way of life. Shift work attracts people whom can benefit from hours that are a million miles away from the traditional 9-5.
Many of our clients at boycerecruitment ask us to recruit roles with non-traditional hours. The earliest adopters of flexible work patterns were the Investment Banks whose global coverage and real time working dynamics have always required people to work long and often antisocial hours.
Job roles for financial institutions include evening team assistants, PAs and receptionists who all ensure that bankers working well into the night have admin support and assistance. Desktop Publishers, whose job is to provide high level presentation materials and graphics, frequently have shifts that work all through the night preparing client critical presentations. City Law Firms and Management Consultancies have followed suit and many have some staff who are required to work late evening, weekend and graveyard shifts.
Financial data vendors, whom report on the financial markets, also need staff with flexible working hours to ensure that the latest prices for the global finance and commodities exchanges are kept updated as each market opens; from Asia in the morning all the way to the Americas later in the day.
Editorial roles have a strong tradition of night work with Fleet Street journalists and production staff working late to ensure the paper is ready for publication the next day. This tradition has continued into the digital age. Multilingual editors; summary translate and edit content for online media to ensure that information is received in a timely manner and that information and broadcasts are ready for viewing. Media Relations teams brief the world’ s press on breaking stories as others of us are eating our breakfast, marketing analysts are preparing global news packs for the world’s largest brands by summary translating any media coverage in the previous 24 hours whilst others of us board the tube during rush hour.
Proof readers, translators, telemarketing, media relations and B2B / B2C telephone interviewers are other staff who may be asked to work out of the “normal” working day. During the last 6 months temps working on projects for Asia Pacific have started worked at 6.00 am to catch the Japanese markets, through to late evenings to liaise with US clients all through their working day on the East and West Coasts, and have also worked weekends to capture consumers’ views on products and brands.
Whilst some people are happy to work flexibly on short term projects; for others working flexibly is a necessary way of life. When recruiting for these roles boycerecruitment takes great care to ensure that we understand what is driving people’s decision about the jobs they apply for. We aim to help them to understand the array of jobs that are on offer. Working for us in flexible work at the moment are; composers, writers, students, parents, sculptors, actors, sports people, musicians, photographers, teachers, psychologists, journalists, therapists, fashion designers, furniture makers as well as a whole host of freelancers who work for a few months a year and then travel.
Should you be interested in flexible working or shift based work, think long and hard about who you are and how this work pattern will affect you and those around you.
Remember a job may not be for life anymore, but you will need to do it for longer than Christmas.