Write an essay summarizing and evaluating the key points from both texts. Use your own words throughout as far as possible and include your own ideas in your answers.
of Flexible Working
Over recent years many companies have moved away from the notion of fixed working hours, following the standard nine-to-five, Monday-to-Friday pattern. There is far more provision today for staff to take advantage of flexible working opportunities of various kinds. With high-speed Internet connections available to many, home-working has become a practical option for companies and members of staff. This modal of flexible working has been particularly beneficial for staff working on projects that entail spending little time in the office. The introduction of formal job-sharing also benefits employees who wish to have a greater work-life balance, particularly those with young children. Finally, employees often have access to flexi-time, the chance to 'bank' hours by working overtime and 'withdrawing' hours when time off is needed.
A recent survey of UK small-businesses discovered an underlying sense of disquiet about the issue of flexible working. Many companies feel under pressure to agree to requests out of fear they will be taken to court by their employee should they refuse. However, business advisers point out that employees have the right to request flexible working not the right to have it agreed. It might not be feasible for a company to agree to requests if the business depends on particular modals of operation, or if such a request would require significant change for a small business. As well as reassuring small businesses of their legal position, companies are also being encouraged to see flexible working as an opportunity rather than a threat. Experience shows it will often benefit both the company and its employees by having a positive impact on motivation and efficiency.