Working time arrangements can have a significant bearing on the efficiency and productivity of companies as well as the health, wellbeing and motivation of their employees. This report provides unique insight into the various working time flexibility arrangements currently in place in companies across Europe. It is based on analysing the findings of a large-scale, representative survey carried out in companies with 10 or more employees in 21 European countries in 2004-5. The report looks at whether and how countries differ in their application of flexible working time systems. It analyses the perceived impact of such arrangements on company performance in terms of economic success and employment stability or growth.
In recent years, the issue of flexicurity – how to maintain a balance between the needs of companies for more flexibility in employment contracts and the needs of workers for flexible working hours and for security of employment – has shifted to centre-stage in the policy arena. This report looks at the impact of the ongoing trend towards greater flexibility in the European labour market. It explores whether the trend has contributed to a better work–life balance for workers and reveals the long-term effects of working in non-standard contracts and working part time on individuals’ careers, incomes and employment security.