It looks as though low-wage employees will finally have at least one perk that they’ll have bargaining power over — namely, flexible shifts.
Last week, Amazon, the company with 100% customer trust, announced that certain staff members (from delivery to warehouse workers) are now able to cancel shifts in as little as 16 hours before the shift begins. Plus, they can swap with colleagues even at the last minute.
The other company, which got its name after a character in Moby Dick, has announced that it’s testing a “shifts app” that will help workers trade shifts and make managing their work a lot easier.
Right off the bat, most experts agree that the two companies aren’t planning to loosen their grip on the way they organize their staff anytime soon. The end goal here is to attract more working parents/mothers to take up jobs.
Looking back, this isn’t the first corporate move to make workers’ lives easier.
For instance, Walmart has already begun offering more flexibility to its workers years ago and several companies followed suit. Consequently, “flexible” job offers have jumped to 20% in 2021, whereas they were merely at 6.4% in 2016.
Hence, experts agree that flexibility is becoming increasingly important and has only gained more ground following the outbreak of the pandemic.
As the chief economics at ZipRecuiter, Julia Pollak said: more and more companies offer remote-friendly positions which pressured on-site employers to offer more flexibility as they are losing a large percentage of workers who are looking for “looser” options.
What’s more, it’s clear to everyone that low-wage jobs have been problematic in terms of scheduling and flexibility. An older study from 2015 concluded that most retail workers are stressed out about short notice work schedule changes, which are often unpredictable and interfere with their private lives.
Experts see these new advancements as a great chance for companies to improve as employers and attract potential candidates on the labor market while helping workers to become more productive and enabling them to create a better work-life balance.