Advertising, Marketing & PR

Published: November 27, 2019 | Updated: November 27, 2019

Agency proves it is possible to have three and four day weekends thanks to flexible working

By Andrew Diprose, editor

A trial scheme at a Poole marketing agency allowing staff to enjoy three and four day weekends has proved so successful that it has now become permanent.

Intergage, which employs 27 people, says it’s proof positive that you don’t need to be a larger or medium-sized company to benefit from flexible working. It can work for smaller businesses too.

Going ‘flexi’ means working around the same number of hours and completing projects by the same deadlines as before – but with employees having greater control of how they make that happen.

Intergage staff used to work 37.5 hours per week – five 7.5-hour days.

Paul Tansey, Intergage’s Managing Director.

Earlier this year they were given the option of working four nine-hour days per week (36 hours/week).

That leaves them free to take off Mondays, Wednesdays or Fridays as flexi-days.

Many businesses fear that flexible working could hit productivity and their ability to meet deadlines.

However, this has not been an issue for Intergage where productivity remains high – despite the fact that flexible working allows staff to enjoy three – and four – day weekends.

Flexible working has also further strengthened staff retention at the Holes Bay Park company.

Paul Tansey, Managing Director, told dorsetbiznews: “We’re a medium-sized firm with 27 employees – some of whom work in teams comprising just a handful of people.

“Members of these small teams liaise among themselves to make flexible working happen without affecting contract delivery. They don’t need to rely on other Intergagers to help them out.

“It proves that you don’t need to be a large or medium-sized company to make flexible working a success. It’s an option for small firms too.”

Nicky Williams, Intergage’s Digital Marketing Manager.

Nicky Williams, Digital Marketing Manager, said: “Flexible working has made such a difference to my life and my well-being.

“My fiancé works shifts; I have a young puppy and my family lives two hours away – so having an extra day each week to spend with them means the absolute world to me.”

So how does a company embark on flexible working?

Intergage recommends a human resources-approved policy with clear, simple guidelines for everyone’s benefit.

Rules include:

  • all working hours and holiday hours must be logged.
  • no flexi-days can be taken in a week containing a bank holiday.
  • only ten hours may be worked in any one day – and lunchbreaks must be a minimum 40 minutes.
  • Tuesdays and Thursday are ‘sacred’ – no flexi-time reduction is permitted – ensuring that the whole team is available for key projects, meetings and other important events.