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Thrilled to be featured on RTE about the new EU directive on work- life balance:

When it comes to flexible work arrangements, there is no one-size-fits-all approach.

For some, flexible work arrangements allow them to take time off in the mornings and afternoons for school drop-offs and collections.

For others, it can mean having an extended lunch break to care for a loved one.

Karen O’Reilly is Founder of Employmum and Employflex, a HR firm that specialises in finding flexible roles for those looking for flexible work.

She said flexible work can also involve compressed hours, full-time with flexibility, annualised hours, job share, term time and part-time.

“Anything that isn’t of a traditional nature of bums on seats between nine and five we would call flexible,” she said.

The Covid-19 pandemic forced many employees to adopt remote or hybrid work patterns, which fall under the category of flexible work.

Two years on, Ms O’Reilly said flexibility is now the number one priority for most people when searching for a job.

“It really is an employees’ market at the moment,” she said.

“It is a cliché that has been bandied about at the moment – but it is definitely true,” she added.

Ms O’Reilly said many people are finding their current roles unsustainable, and are walking away from companies who have a “presenteeism” culture.

“People are more attracted to companies that are authentically offering flexible work.

“Companies like Bord Gáis and An Post are genuinely offering this, and I think other companies, whether they like it or not, will follow suit now because the market is dictating this,” she said.

She said employers that are not authentic in their offering of flexible and remote work are going to be left behind.

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