At Polycom, a flexible workforce is a business imperative. Polycom has successfully tapped on its IT expertise to create a flexible working environment that offers its employees full mobility and empowers staff to tailor their personal work-life solutions, resulting in a sustainable work-life strategy for the organisation and its employees.
Industry: Information & Communications
Employment size: Above 100
Employment profile: IT professionals, technical, sales, marketing and administrative staff
Featured work-life programmes:
the Executive Summary.
Flexible Work Arrangements
- Staggered time
Strong support from Polycom Singapore (Polycom)’s senior management is key to the organisation’s effective work-life practices. Several strategies are in place to ensure a sustainable flexible culture:
- Polycom hires talent that are a good fit with its work-life culture.
- It uses flexibility in a tailored approach to attract and groom potential talent. For example, its flexible internship scheme allows interns to serve a one-year internship by working part-time with Polycom while continuing with their education after the usual 10 weeks. Interns are more engaged and the company gains high calibre employees.
- It addressed employees’ need for ad-hoc flexi-work in emergency situations by engaging an employment agency to ensure temporary staff coverage for employees within 24 hours. This ensures that flexible work options are fully available to them at short notice.
The management also provides employees with guidelines on flexible working, offering tips such as the IT setup needed to work from home and how to maintain an online presence while working remotely.
A positive trust culture is a key factor in Polycom’s work-life success.
Employees are empowered to tailor their personal work-life solutions without affecting their efficiency at work and this results in a more engaged, loyal and willing workforce.
As a global organisation, Polycom recognises that employees are increasingly required to work outside traditional hours to meet client requests and attend virtual meetings. To facilitate this, employees are allowed to manage their own work hours to ensure that work goals are met.
Self-management and accountability are strongly emphasised at Polycom. Employees are empowered to self-assess and utilise available flexible work options to achieve their personal goals and responsibilities while ensuring that work objectives are met. Employees are highly aware of work expectations, and strive hard to work efficiently and effectively to meet these, with minimal supervision.
Polycom taps on its in-house expertise to enable flexible working for all its employees, providing them with the hardware and software to allow them to work virtually from anywhere and still interact with team members and clients as efficiently and frequently.
In order to efficiently harness a fully mobile workforce, Polycom has a customised performance management framework to ensure that employees are accountable for their work and can be accurately assessed. Some key aspects of this framework include setting concrete goals for staff, conducting regular reviews and equipping employees with IT capabilities to maintain online presence.
Polycom’s flexibility initiatives have proven to be effective in drawing and retaining high-performing employees. It has also seen a rise in productivity − as employees know that they are assessed on their ability to deliver specific outcomes rather than face-time; motivating them to perform efficiently at work. This strong culture of flexibility is clearly a win-win strategy for both the organisation and its employees.
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This case study was first published on the former Employer Alliance website.