What are issues of flexible workers in a company with low cost strategy?

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M.P. Ossa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

As part of a low-cost labor strategy a company may want to implement flexible working arrangements in order to concede its workers the chance to schedule their duties as it is most convenient to them. This is done in order to avoid having to pay full-time worker benefits, loyalty-based pay raises, or bonuses.

A flexible worker is one who can build his or her own daily hours as long as they comply with the required amount of time per week for which they were hired.

Some of the problems with flex workers that may arise could include the following scenarios.

First, not all companies can use a flex working schedule. Depending of the need for productivity, some companies are entirely dependent on the employee "being" there. This includes product manufacturing, quality control/assurance, work-cell team manufacturing, bulk production and shipping, and multiple task performance. If a company gives employees too much leeway, chances are that someone will be needed to perform a job and may not be there to do it. As a result, substitutions and what is known as "overhead" hiring will occur and that is more money spent on additional labor.

Second, some employees perform better than others. That will always be the case. If the difference in performance is dramatic, it will become more obvious. For example, with flexible schedules  a company cannot afford to differentiate and group strong workers with weak workers to level production.

Hence, there is a chance that, perhaps, the strongest workers work all at the same time, and the weakest will work at another time. The effects will be visible in the quality of work and companies will have to invest time and money in quality control to try to ameliorate the differences.

Therefore, companies must plan ahead of time how they are going to compensate for potential absences and on how they are going to make up for the manner in which they will split tasks and evaluate the performance of duties.

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