Survey finds that flexible furlough led to increased openness around part-time working.

Nearly half of businesses have said the flexible furlough scheme helped their managers learn how to manage flexible and part-time staff, a study has found

A poll conducted by Cranfield School of Management and the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), found 45 per cent believed the flexible aspect introduced towards the end of the coronavirus job retention scheme helped line managers learn how to design and manage part-time work more effectively.

The poll of HR professionals and other senior business representatives,

A similar proportion (46 per cent) said it helped line managers learn how to better match resourcing with periods of peak demand for their business activity.

The research, which also polled line managers, found 96 per cent were more flexible about where their employees worked after using flexible furlough, and that 87 per cent were more flexible about how their employees scheduled working hours.

Line managers were also more likely than senior business representatives to consider requests for part-time working (62 per cent and 39 per cent respectively).

The study polled representatives from 208 UK businesses in February this year.

Office for National Statistics data from March this year showed that before the pandemic, a quarter (26 per cent) of UK employees worked part time. For some workers, this was to meet business needs, while for others, part-time work allowed them to meet requirements outside of work.