The most popular benefit to offer staff is flexible working arrangements, borne out in a recent study of employee benefits in the UK by Enjoy Benefits director Vic Johnston.

And it’s a popular offer by employers too. Ninety percent of the organisations who completed a survey as part of Vic Johnston’s research include flexible working as part of their package of employee benefits.

With flexible working out-ranking even childcare benefits in popularity, it’s worth looking at the different types of flexibility that UK employers offer. At the same time, we’ll consider what other salary-sacrifice schemes and rewards go well with each type of flexible working pattern.


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Flexible working and the pandemic

Flexible working became normalised during the Coronavirus pandemic, as millions of us worked remotely from home for nearly two years. Some of the people who worked from home may even have had remote working requests turned down prior to the pandemic.

Covid turned so much of the world on its head, not least of all workplace ‘norms’. Now that employees are making their way back into offices, whether full time or in hybrid models, many people may be considering personal flexible working requests.

Here are some of the different types of flexible working patterns and the benefits that might suit staff working in that way.


Part-time working

This covers any arrangement where an employee is contracted to work less than full-time hours. Basic pay and other terms such as annual leave are adjusted pro rata. It’s estimated that 10% of the professional workforce in the US and Canada works part time.

Part-time working is most frequently requested by people who need to care for young children or ageing parents. It can also be helpful for study or continued professional development.

Which employee benefits would suit part-time workers? Childcare benefits, where families can save thousands of pounds on nursery costs, are one of the most popular and useful for workers with pre-school children. Shopping discounts are also helpful to staff on stretched budgets.



This is when two part-time workers combine their hours to work together in one full-time role. The benefit to the employer is that the role is filled across the week, providing continuity. Additionally, employers get ‘two heads for the price of one’. Everyone has different talents and knowledge, so job shares can widen a talent pool while headcount remains the same.

Job shares are more likely to be made up of women than men. A key benefit they offer is the chance for part-time workers to pursue full-time roles, which often gives the employees in the job share greater opportunities for advancement. 

Staff in job shares will benefit from the same employee rewards as part-time workers. Our healthcare cash plan is another great way for part-time workers to save money, allowing staff to claim back the cost of healthcare treatments such as eye tests, dental treatment and physiotherapy.


Term-time working

This  allows employees to take school holidays off, while working full-time during school terms. All holidays are taken in term times too, with the rest of the time off taken as unpaid leave. The salary deduction is spread out across 12 months. 

This option won’t work for every employer, but where it does, it’s an excellent solution to the holiday childcare conundrum some employees face. Discount Club travel benefits that offer savings on holidays and hotels in the UK and around the world may be ideal for term-time workers, helping them make the most of their time off.


Compressed hours

This may be a good solution if an employee needs more flexibility but can’t afford to reduce their pay. Compressed hours means working longer on some days, to free up time at set periods in the week. So, they may work four longer days and take Fridays off, for example. Or they may compress their hours over a longer period and do fortnightly hours over nine days, taking every other Friday off.
Gym membership and flexible working
Gym memberships, wellness packages and EAP are helpful for staff working compressed hours. These can help them keep their health and mental well-being in focus when they are juggling extra commitments in addition to a full-time job.

Staggered hours and flexitime

Like compressed hours, this does not affect the employee’s pay packet, but gives them greater flexibility to fit in commitments outside of work. This type of flexible working is often done informally, with staff agreeing with their managers a later start time or earlier finish time. It enables people to do things like pick up their children from school, take relatives to hospital appointments, or attend classes for study.

Travelling outside of rush hours can make driving or cycling to work more feasible for some employees. Commuting packages like car lease benefit and the cycle to work scheme could come into their own for flexitime workers.


Remote working

Millions of people in the UK became homeworkers during the pandemic, and for many it’s something they don’t want to give up. Moreover, if there was no drop in productivity and effectiveness while the job was done from home, their bosses may be equally happy for the arrangement to continue.

Working from home can be a lonely business, so remote workers will benefit from well-being packages like the Employee Assistance Programme and our Health and Wellbeing Programme. Things that get homeworkers out and about, like gym memberships and discounts on entertainment, are also a good idea. Our Discount Club offers discounts of up to 40% on cinema tickets, and discounts on major attractions in the UK as well as holidays and hotels.


Hybrid working

Many office-based businesses have plumped for this option post-pandemic. Workers return to the office, but continue to work some days at home in the week. There’s already evidence that the majority of workers prefer hybrid working to working remotely full time.

Returning to the office after nearly two years away is a significant adjustment for many people. Mental health and well-being support can help staff make this transition more comfortably. 

Using Rewards and Recognition schemes for staff can feel more meaningful face to face, and can make offices feel like a fun place to be. Spending time split between home and the office can provide new options for commuting or exercise – people might change their gyms or try a new form of transport to work.


Flexible retirement

Some businesses offer flexible retirement (subject to eligibility), where you can claim some of your pension while working, and reduce your hours. This is a good time to investigate Healthcare benefits, and look into writing or updating wills, using the Will Writing benefit.


Career breaks

You’re more likely to find these offered by large organisations. Employees can take time off from the job, unpaid, and return to it after a set period of time. This is often used for travel, study or for family reasons. It can be a good idea to take advantage of benefits like the Mobile Phone benefit and Cycle to Work scheme before taking the time off. This will help you make savings on things you will probably purchase anyway, while you still have access to the discount scheme.


About Us

At Enjoy Benefits, we have great experience in helping companies of all sizes introduce benefits that are suitable for their workplace.

Benefits are easy to set up and ongoing administration is then run through a hub, allowing employees to manage their own benefits while the employer can see which benefits are proving popular and what level of take-up each has had.

If you would like an obligation free chat to discuss which benefits might work for your business and your employees, please contact us by calling 0800 088 7315 or using our Contact Form.