News & insights

Announcing our 'Flex for Success' pledge

By Saira Demmer
Announcing our Flex for Success pledge 1

In our 25-year history, we have never been afraid to change tactics and lead the way in trying new ways of working, and this latest campaign is testament to that bold philosophy.  We introduced fully flexible working for the whole business in 2021 and it has proved to be so incredibly successful that we’ve decided to commit to a public pledge in support of flexible working for all. 

In our research for this campaign, we learned that 1/3 of women are yet to return to work post-pandemic1    92% of young people2 state that flexible working is a must when looking for their next role and 87% of everyone else surveyed3  would like to continue with some degree of flexibility in their work post-pandemic. This shift needs to happen, and here at SF, we believe we can help to make that a reality. 

We also learned in our research that flexible working has been proven to help attract and retain a more highly skilled workforce. It also addresses the gender pay gap, encourages diversity in the workplace and works towards the government’s ‘Levelling Up’ plans5

Our CEO, Saira Demmer shares her opinion on how flexible working has been so successful for our business “We are strong believers in the power of personal autonomy to drive happiness at work and therefore flexibility has become a core component of our business model. Flexibility isn’t just about working hours - although they are important – for us it’s about having the freedom to make your own decisions and to adapt the way you work; how and when you need to. It’s been hugely successful for us, boosting staff productivity and improving retention. We’ve even seen our gender pay gap tilt slightly in favour of women this year as it’s giving working parents an easier route to success.  We want to share our positive experiences and use our platform to support the businesses and candidates we work with”. 

76% of employees are more likely to apply for a role if there is an option to work flexible hours4   highlighting that flexibility is no longer a nice-to-have, but an expectation for today’s workers.  By tapping into a vast talent pool of highly-skilled people who have written themselves out the jobs market post covid, (heard of the great resignation?) our teams can offer their clients the best talent on the market, providing solutions that were previously considered not possible. 

Research has proven that flexibility works for businesses, and it works for people.  A societal shift is on its way and we want to use our status as a leading recruitment business by modelling and supporting other businesses in making a change towards flexible working operations.  To help us in this aim, we are working with Timewise, a business consultancy who help businesses to design, plan and implement flexible working strategies and Working Families, who provide employers the tools they need to support their employees while creating a flexible, high-performing workforce. We’re also partnering with Working Families for some exciting projects together over the next 12 months, so watch this space! 

Jodie Broadley, one of our Divisional Managers based in Nottingham comments on the campaign launch: “We are happy to have the ‘awkward conversations’ about flexible working that our candidates can often feel vulnerable discussing for fear of looking ‘work-shy’.  We know there is no one-size-fits-all solution; some jobs and environments lend themselves better to various degrees of flexibility. We want to normalise conversations around flexible working early in the recruitment process. Flexible working doesn’t just mean working from home, it can be flexible patterns, flexible start and finish times, job-share, reduced hours, phased retirement, reducing workloads to fit hours. When we work around these challenges, the candidates that become available to our clients increases ten-fold, and in a competitive marketplace, this gives us what we need to satisfy our client’s recruitment needs”.  

We really do believe in flexible working and practice what we preach.  We have recently won two awards in the Working Families Best Practice Awards; Best for Flexible Working and Best Small Employer and are also 5th in the UK's 'Best Small Companies to Work For' National League Table, 6th Best Company to Work For regardless of size in the East Midlands, 9th Best Company to Work For regardless of size in the West Midlands and The 6th Best Recruiter to Work For in the UK. 

Please stay tuned for more on this, because we have so much more to come. You can keep up to date with us on LinkedIn  

If you’d like to speak to one of our consultants to find out how we can help you find the flexible career solution you need, please get in touch. We’re looking forward to helping you in the next stage of your career. 



LinkedIn Data May 2022 | 2 & 5 Flexenomics. The economic and fiscal logic of Flexible working November 2021. (Pragmatix Advisory Ltd) | Monster Jobs – Flexible Future: UK Hiring Outlook 2022 | 4  Sodexo Engage (Employee engagement experts) 

Saira Demmer
Saira Demmer