Return to blog

How to design a flexible role

The team at RoleMapper, an intelligent job design platform, give pointers on how to design a flexible role. 

Flexible job design allows you to create clear, effective and measurable job descriptions, so that all parties, namely the employee and manager, have clear goals and objectives; but how do you design an existing role to be more flexible working-friendly?

Location

Some roles are such that an individual needs to be in the office or at a specific site or location. Think about how this can be adjusted to allow for remote working. This will also allow you to get a clearer picture on location dependent employees, which could prove useful when assessing social distancing desk policies.

Workflow

This focuses on stakeholder responsibility and the exact nature of the role. It’s important here to assess whether the job maintains the same level of work that follows the same patterns or deadlines, or whether it is more interchangeable on a weekly or monthly basis.

Availability and predictability

Does that stakeholder need to be team-facing at all times? If so, how quickly do they need to engage or respond? As a manager, they may control the flow of work or may have to pivot quickly to focus on a new task, which may require team meetings.

Segmentation

Assess if the role can be segmented to allow for colleagues to take on new responsibility or shared with a peer. This could be an opportunity to support and nurture employee development.

A well-designed flexible role can help increase employee productivity and motivation, but it must be effective, realistic, achievable and measurable in order to succeed.

Job design also ensures there is clear communication between the employee and the employer. Verbal agreements or an addendum to a contract isn’t an actual job description and could be left open to misinterpretation and misunderstanding in the long term.

Some roles are such that an individual needs to be in the office or at a specific site or location. Think about how this can be adjusted to allow for remote working.

This will also allow you to get a clearer picture on location dependent employees, which could prove useful when assessing social distancing.

By using technology to design roles not only reduces the strain it may put on your HR resource, but also removes any conscious or unconscious bias or preferences that may influence the type of flexibility an employee is offered.

RoleMapper, a job design platform that helps organisations create and scale consistent best practice, job design, job profiles, job descriptions and job adverts.