Flexible working could help companies avoid high staff turnover, which can be expensive, according to new research. Workspace provider Regus has performed research that suggests that flexible working should be made a top priority on HR agendas this year in order to reduce company outgoings.

Regus surveyed 2,600 senior executives and business owners throughout the UK, finding that 71 per cent believe that flexible working is beneficial when it comes to improving levels of staff retention. Some 71 per cent of businesses also said that flexible working is important when it comes to attracting new talent.

It isn't just the companies that see the benefit in flexible working, with three-quarters of those canvassed saying that they would be likely to choose a job that offered a greater choice of work style over another that didn't.

Flexible working is often seen as a great way to promote a more balanced lifestyle, allowing employees to fit their work life around their home life. It usually entails multi-location working, allowing employees to work from the office and from home at different points in the week or month. This type of working can also entail part-time or flexible working hours.

This style of working can help to better motivate employees and maintain a better level of energy, which means that flexible working can be an important tool for HR. 

Some 74 per cent of office workers also stated that they think flexible working makes them more productive, while 56 per cent said that they would refuse a job that did not offer any options on flexible working.

John Spencer, UK chief executive at Regus, said: “It was not so long ago that flexible working was the province of sales people and senior managers who lived a long way from the company headquarters. But over the last couple of years, as the wide-ranging health and productivity benefits have become apparent, flexibility has become an essential part of any attractive job, particularly for younger workers."