We’re incredibly excited about the results from the ConvergenceCoaching®, LLC 2018 Anytime, Anywhere Work™ (ATAWW) Survey, the fourth iteration of our analysis of CPA firm flexible and virtual work programs! ATAWW programs are not about less work or production, with the exception of part-time programs. Instead, ATAWW offerings allow your people to have more control over when and where they are working, achieve better work-life integration and feel more successful both at work and at home.
“…highly flexible working arrangements enhance the degree of employee loyalty. Not only do millennials appreciate not being tied to strict hours or locations, they also value the trust their employers demonstrate in granting that flexibility.” 2018 Deloitte Millennial Survey
This year, we received responses from 175 distinct firms around the country, providing a deeper understanding of the kinds of programs firms are offering, as well as best practices employed and benefits experienced by both the firm and the team members.
Firm size varied slightly from the previous survey runs, with 72% of firms reporting as large firms (21-74 CPAs) and major firms (75+ CPAs).
Some of the highlights from the survey include:
- 99% offer some or all the option to flex where they work (remote work), up from 94% in 2016
- 96% allow some or all team members to flex their hours, down from 97% in the prior survey
- 85% offer part-time options (less production)
- 83% have an early/late start program, offering team members the opportunity to choose a start and end time that better fit his/her lifestyle
- 83% allow for day-to-day flex of time, offering as-needed flexibility to attend doctor’s appointments, for instance, and other non-recurring obligations
- 82% of firms who have a remote worker retained an employee when they moved to a different geography, up from 42% in 2016 (awesome!)
- 70% offer day-to-day anywhere flex, where team members can adjust their workplace as needed to meet personal obligations that are non-recurring (like meeting the repair person at home)
- 63% employ a team member in another geography, up from 57% in 2016
- 58% no longer mandate Saturday office hours, up from 39% in the 2016 survey
- 56% believe that leadership sees flex as a strategic advantage, up from 44% in 2016
- 54% are conducting remote audits (with 50% or more of the work completed away from client’s office)
- 54% have a written policy documenting ATAWW programs, a critical component to creating a true culture of flexibility
- 50% offer some sort of Fridays off benefit during the summer, down from 51% in the prior survey
- 47% of firms allow team members to choose their place of work, up from 45% in 2016
- 41% of firms who have a remote worker hired an employee in their remote geography, up from 15% in 2016 (wow!)
- 35% have a written flex policy in place that is updated annually, down from 40% in 2016
- 11% offer an unlimited PTO program, up from 5% in the 2016 survey
- 6% close for the week between Christmas and New Year’s Eve, down from 12% in the last survey
As you can see, this year’s results demonstrate that flex programs are becoming table stakes, or the minimum “ante” required to attract and retain top talent. Firms must seek ways to expand and improve the types of programs offered, create buy-in and support for use of ATAWW options, and develop a culture that embraces flexibility and mobility across the organization, at all levels.
If you’d like to learn more about the survey and ATAWW programs, download the full survey results summary here.
How will you progress your flexibility “profile” in 2019? Pick 1 – 2 improvement ideas from the list above and get started today!