As well as being busy helping all of our fabulous clients with their marketing and SEO the Wagada team were also busy celebrating last week too! Yes it was time to crack open the bubbly as it was announced that we had been shortlisted for the Mumandworking 2016 awards in the Flexible Business of the Year category. This category was open to any company, business or charity who actively promote exceptionally family-friendly and flexible working for their employees and it is judged by a panel of VIP experts. As you can imagine we are really excited and can’t wait to find out if we have won the award in October – we’re keeping our fingers and toes crossed!

Although it’s really exciting getting nominated for an award for our commitment to flexibility, it is something that we have always felt really passionate about and we are really keen on promoting family friendly initiatives throughout our business. We’re keen to show people that flexibility can lead to a more motivated, productive and happy team. Therefore we thought we’d take a look at some of the reasons that flexible working can be so vital in today’s business community – and hear from some of the Wagada team about the benefits of flexible working and the positive impact that it has on their work life balance.

Helping parents back into the workplace

In the UK we are really lucky to be able to take up to a year off on maternity or paternity leave but when you leave the lovely ‘baby bubble’ and go back to work you might find yourself coming back down to earth with a bump! As well as the tiredness from a long commute and the expense of childcare working full time can also mean that you miss out on important family time. Our Marketing Manager Claire shared her experience of going back to work full time for a big corporate company.

“My family life suffered hugely as a result – I barely saw my kids and had to stay away with work a lot. I missed out on so many of the special times the children experienced at pre-school, infant school, clubs and activities. And all the while I was spending an absolute fortune on full-time childcare for my two kids”

This is a story that will be familiar to many working parents and at Wagada we don’t think that work should be like this. We know that there is a huge pool of talented mums and dads out there and we want to help them shine. It’s such a shame that many parents feel relegated to more junior jobs and roles once they have children as they have so much to offer the business community. Flexible working allows us to make the most of their wonderful talents whilst they still get the benefits of family life. This means that we know we can offer our clients a fabulous and dedicated team of people who are passionate and motivated to do their very best.

Flexibility for everyone

When people talk about flexible working they often see it as only really being applicable to mothers with young children – but at Wagada that’s certainly not the case. We promote flexible working for everyone whether they are a mum or dad – or even if they don’t have children.

With an aging population we think that we’re going to see an increasing number of people taking on caring responsibilities for elderly relatives and we think that it’s vital that this is supported in the workplace. Our Marketing Director Jo tells us about her experience.

“I don’t have children to focus on but being able to spend quality time with my ageing family is equally important to me and Wagada are really supportive”

Likewise may people also have hobbies or out of work commitments that they would like to spend time on and flexible working can help support that too. If it matters to our staff then it matters to us and Jonny our Digital Marketing Exec (and future superstar) manages to combine doing a wonderful job to support our clients with building his musical empire!

“Music has always been a huge part of my life, but finding a job after University which would allow me to pursue this passion was difficult…I now work four days a week for Wagada with Thursday my dedicated ‘music day’, when I have been rehearsing with my band for an EP we are recording”

As you can see everyone’s lifestyle can benefit from some flexibility and we respect that fact that different things are important to different people and aim to give all of our staff the benefits of flexible working.

Building a productive team

Another great benefit of our staff working flexibly is that it allows them to be really productive at a time that suits them. We appreciate that being sat at a desk from 9-5 is not the right way for everyone to work. Some of us might like to get up early and do a few hours work before the children wake up and others are real night owls who like a bit of a lie in but are happy to work late into the night! Whatever your preference flexible working means you can find the hours to suit you. We think our Marketing Account Manager Jeni put it really well when she told us the following example.

“Wagada are very flexible – as long as the job gets done they are quite happy for the work to fit around me”

And of course we know that sometimes the peace and quiet that you get when working from home can often be of real benefit to our staff’s creativity and what they can bring to the business. Debbie our Marketing Executive explains how this works for her.

“Working from home is another option that works well for me at certain times when I may need to work slightly unconventional hours, or simply when I need some planning or creative time away from the office.”

The old workplace culture of presentism is really on its way out and we feel that it’s important as a business to focus on productivity and doing an amazing job for the client, rather than simply clocking up the hours at a desk.

Happiness and wellbeing

A happy team is a productive team, and we think that an increase in staff well-being due to enabling them to have the work-life balance that suits them is great not only for our business but for our clients too! They know that they have a team of dedicated, motivated and talented people available to cover their marketing needs so they’re happy too!

We’re really proud of our dedication to flexible working and we’re thrilled that the mumandworking awards have chosen Wagada as an example of a company who do flexible working really successfully. We’ll leave the last word about workplace flexibility with Shelley our Adwords Executive who really sums it up when she says

“At Wagada I’ve achieved the perfect work life balance; I can be there for my family and still enjoy time for a career!”