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Two in five employees ‘have more flexible working hours then before pandemic’

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About two in five (42%) employees say they have more flexibility in their working hours now than they did before the coronavirus pandemic struck.

Nearly a fifth (17%) of people surveyed have a lot more flexibility, according to to the survey from Aviva.

Working and schooling at home have meant people have had to juggle their responsibilities in different ways over the past year in order to balance their lives.

Aviva also found that 45 to 54-year-olds – many of whom will also have dependant children – typically work the longest hours per week at 32 hours, across all full and part-time employees surveyed.

When asked what their perfect work schedule would look like, most UK workers (61%) would prefer to work longer hours each day in order to have a extended weekend.

Alistair McQueen
Alistair McQueen from Aviva said employees in mid-life are under specific strains (Aviva/PA)

This choice of work pattern was the most popular among the 25 to 34-year-olds (65%). Three-fifths (60%) of 45 to 54-year-olds also agreed.

A quarter (25%) of people surveyed think they would enjoy the flexibility of a four-day week.

Aviva has a “mid-life MOT” app to support people with their work and wellbeing.

Alistair McQueen, head of savings and retirement at Aviva, said: “Lockdown has changed the working lives of many. Flexibility has increased, and there appears to be appetite for more amongst some age groups.

“Our research indicates that those in mid-life are already working the longest hours on average.”

He added: “Of all ages, greater flexibility in mid-life may carry the greatest reward for the individual and their employer.

“This is a fast-growing employee population, and one that is under specific strain.”

More than 2,000 full and part-time employees were surveyed in May.