Snow makes case for flexible working, but not everybody can work from home

SNOW disrupted many business activities across Peterborough last week. Overnight snow made travelling around the city especially difficult on Thursday.

Bus services were suspended and many trains were cancelled. Many staff walked to work because of the dangerous driving conditions and many more stayed at home, either working from home via the internet or enjoying an unexpected day off.

An estimated 20% of the working population did not make it to work, costing the UK economy over £1.2bn, according to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).

Last week’s weather conditions also forced a strong case for businesses to implement flexible working capabilities for their employees.

Rebecca Clarke, organisation and resourcing advisor at the Chartered Institute for Professional Development, said: “Companies that have put in place the technology and management practices to allow their people to work flexibly in normal times can reap the rewards today, as thousands of people log on from their living rooms and bedrooms to keep the knowledge economy ticking over.”

But one Peterborough businesswoman, who did not want to be named, told Peterborough Business: “I know I’m going to sound like a killjoy but I think too many people gave up too easily. My staff can’t work from home. If we’re not there, the work doesn’t get done. We had clients who made it into the city from Kings Lynn but staff couldn’t get to the office from West Town.”