In recent years, more attention has been paid to well-being at work and a good balance between work and private life. That is not unjustified since we work an average of 8 hours a day. Find out here why that balance is so important and how you can ensure it as an employer and employee.
Why work-life balance is so important
Since we spend a large part of our day at work, this aspect has a major impact on our lives. More specifically, the balance between our work and private lives.
Professor Kyndt (University of Antwerp/Swinburne University of Technology) is currently working with her colleagues on a large-scale meta-analysis of more than 200 studies and found that work-life balance is one of the main workplace factors contributing to well-being problems (i.e. stress, burnout, etc.) at work.
This balance is something that an employee must monitor himself, but the employer must also take responsibility for this. If this does not happen, there is a chance that the employee will end up overworked, unhappy, or even burned out. Something that does not benefit the employee, his or her family, and the organization.
How employees think about work-life balance
Current research by Professor Kyndt (University of Antwerp) shows that 86.8% of Belgian employees consider work-life balance a priority, but 54% of this group of employees indicate that they experience that this is not important for their employer. The same trend is observed for having a reasonable workload. This is a priority for 85% of employees, but 58% say it is not important to their employer.
In addition, MyCareerCompanion users also indicate that work-life balance is in the top three career drivers when looking for a new job. Work-life balance is thus not only important for the retention and well-being of current employees but also becomes more and more important in recruiting the right talent.
How employers can contribute to well-being at work
An employee can do his utmost not to work overtime, to get enough sleep and to be happy… But if the working conditions do not allow this, this is impossible. An employer must therefore also consider the happiness and work-life balance of his employees.
This can be done, for example, by:
- Introducing flexible working hours;
- Offering the choice between working full-time or part-time;
- Allowing homeworking;
- Ensuring a good separation between work and private life by allowing employees to disconnect from work.
- Putting together a realistic task package
- Giving employees autonomy over which tasks they perform when and how
- Offering services such as fitness, parcel delivery, ironing service, ….
All of these contribute to a better work-life balance, resulting in happier employees and a better-functioning organization.