The Role Of An Organisations Behavior Commerce Essay


Organisational behaviour is the study of the behaviour and attitudes of people in organisation which helps to improve the effectiveness and productivity of the organisation.

Individual, Group and Organisation are the three main unit of analysis - micro and macro.

'Micro ' approach emphasises on the topics such as employees attitudes, personality traists ,

motivation to work , group formation and group decision making. The 'Macro ' approach condiers organisation on a whole as a primary unit of analysis. Both the approaches have their roots in the behavioural and social sciences of pyschology , sociology , economics, political sciences , anthropology and social psychology


  According to the Institute of Psychiatry(2005) , stress, anxiety and depression have become the most common cause for the long term absence amongst the employees at work thus leading to the increase in the absenteeism rate in the organisation


  Absenteeism can be defined as an employees deliberate or habitual absence from work

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thought to reflect employee demoralization or dissatisfaction.

It can be further classified as Innocent Absenteeism and Culpable Absenteeism. These are two types of absenteeism which requires a different type of approach.


Innocent Absenteeism : Refers to the employees who are absent for genuine reasons like sickness and injury. It cannot be remedied or treated by disciplinary measures.


Culpable Absenteeism : Refers to the employees who remains absent intentionally (for no genuine reason ) and without any authorisation from their seniors.It can be considered as blameworthy . In labour relations context,a disciplinary action can be taken


  Thus absenteeism in other words ,can be termed as failure to report to work.

With high rate of absenteeism its very difficult for the organisation to achieve its objective and goals which they have aimed for - as the workflow is disrupted and important decisions may be delayed causing a drastic reduction in the quality of output.


  There is a famous saying " The theory without practical is lame and practical without

theory is blind ". With support to this lines we would further discuss the relavent behaviour theories

which can be used in day to day operations to manage the absenteeism in the workplace ensuring job satasfication amongst the employees. It is hoped that the application of the principles associatied with the behavioural theories will improve the overall attendance record and reduce the unacceptable costs associated with absenteeism.
















Question 1)

Discuss with reference to relevant theories covered in the Organisational behaviour module,

how absence should be measured and managed so as to avoid problems to those outlined in

the case.















  Organisational behaviour is an applied discipline which attempts to explain behaviour in organisation in terms of valid theories. The field of OB focuses heavily on the connection

between emloyee behaviour,attitudes and the productivity of the organisation.

Many theories address problems which the managers face on the regular basis. As a result,

managers looks for the theories which help them interpret organisational events and processes

in behavioural terms. Behavioural theories helps in solving human problems in the work environment. It is been stated that a significant relationship exists between the management and the organisational behaviour. Managers can rely on these behavioural theories as

• It helps to solve problems in the work setting

• It helps to understand new developments in the field of OB

• It helps to evaluate effectively the proposed solutions to behavioural problems in organisation.



  Enlighting these points we can say that theory helps in building generalised models applicable to the range of organisations or situations. It gives a conceptual framework and gives a perspective

for the practical study of the subject.


  Lee refers to " ...danger of adopting theories because they are teachable,rather than because they are effective (however) ..without appropriate theory, there would be very little communication of the insights of scientific theory to practising managers "


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  Behaviour of people cannot be isolated. It is interrelated to the interactions amongst the formal structures,technology employed, methods of carrying out the work, the process of management and the external environment.



  Kurt Lewin postulated that human behaviour is a function of the person and the environment :

  B = f (P,E)

A micro model SOBC simplifies this idea - it specifies a sequence for understanding the behaviour of individuals.


  Stimulus Behaviour & Consequences

  situation -----------> Organism ---------> Actions ------------> or outcomes.


  Its of utmost importance to understand and characterise the difference betwee the employee's needs and the organisational productivity. Employees behaviour reflects in the attitudes towards work. Initially it was work is where life Employees use to enjoy their work and was happy with it. Happiness lies in the meanigful and creative work .But now the line between the work and life is been rubbed out. Few people want to put their work in a box labelled ' nine to five'.

Each employees behaviour is different .These differences not only foster the creativity,

enjoyment and satisfaction at work but can also be the root causes of the frustration and conflicts.

Its not necessary that employees what they expect they receive from the organisation - these leads to severe behaviour problem towards work which may further result to the absence from work schedule.




  Here comes into picture - Absenteeism !! It means the habitual evasion of work or willful absence as in strike action. Absenteeism is further classified into two types of absenteeism as mentioned before .


Innocent Absenteeism : Is one in which the employee is absent from work due to genuine cause or reason.It may be due to illness or personal family problem or any other real reason.


Culpable Absenteeism : Is one in which a person is absent from work without any genuine reason or cause.He may be pretending to be ill or just wanted a holiday and stay at home.




Absenteeism can be considered more than a disruption.It can result in a drastic reduction in quality

of output and in some cases it can bring a complete shutdown of the production quality.

The diagram below represents the Individual level, Group Level and the Organisational level

with an Environment impact on the employees. It consists of various factors out of which lack in feeling towards one of the factor can be the major cause for employee absenteeism.



The reasons for the absences can be divideed amongst two categories :

Internal (within the Individual)

External ( within the company)


Internal cause : includes serious accidents and illness , transportation problems, stress, low morale, poor physical fitness, inadequate nutrition and personal problems.


External cause : ranges from poor working conditions , boredom on the job, low morale , lack of job satisfaction, guaranteed salary , workload.





The Industrial society report Maximising Attendance also highlights a divergence of opinion

between what manager thinks the reason for absence and what employees say themselves.







Lets have alook below how the innocent and culpable absenteeism can be handled by applying organisational theories .













Causes for Absenteeism can be due to the factors shown in the above diagram at every level -Individual , Group and Organisational .


 1] Individual Level


 a) Cause for Absence : Individual Differences (Values, Perceptions,Personality traits)

  Managaing Absence: Locus of control concept .


Explaination for causes:


According to Professor Rokeach, values are enduring beliefs that a specific mode of conduct or end satate of existence is personally or socially preferable to an opposite or converse mode of conduct .

Values exists in people ar a deeper psychological level which often shapes the individual's view of

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authority and its rights and obligations. Two types of values are:

Instrumental value : to achieve goals by using acceptable behaviours to get to an end state.

Terminal value : are the goals to be achieved or the appropriateness of desired end states.


An example of the terminal and instrumental values of the executives, union members and activists is given below :

If these two sets of value doesnt seems to work in harmony leading to a dissatisfaction will then result into the absence from the work.



Managing Absenteeism :

Inorder to avoid the absenteeism due to these resons managers can consider the concept of applying the locus of control in an organisation .


" Locus of control is defined as an individuals belief that one's actions influences the outcomes one experiences in life." It has to do with the perceptions of cause and effect relationships.

It helps an individual balance, explain and accepts his life circumstances.

Locus of control can be related to work behaviour -as it consists of Internalisers and Externalisers.

Employees can be attracted to work situations which have opportunities for personal achievements.


Thus, managers should

• encourage the employees by saying that the rewards are based on the

superior skill and performance based.

• Invovle employees in decision making

• Give Promotions,pay rises and added responsibilties to the employees.



Measuring Locus of Control:

The managers can come up with a score chart to measure locus of control of the employees .


Eg :

1 a .Receving pay is a matter of hardwork ; being in right place has nothing to do with it

  b. Pay rises are matter of of getting noticed by your superior.


The employees should measure themselves out of 6.

Score less than 3 : indicates Internal locus of control

Score more than 3 : indicates External locus of control

Score between 3 and 4 : indicate the inconsistency of beliefs about the relationship between the behaviour and the outcomes.


By doing so the manager will able be to judge each employee behaviours (introvert or extrovert) and can accordingly take steps to manage them depending on the individual differences.





b) Cause for absence : Stress in the work environment

  Managing Absence : Stress Management Policy


Explaination for causes:

Dr.Kenneth Cooper (1985) identified several factors - Environmental , Organisational and Individual factors which leads to stress resulting into Physiological , Pyschological and Behavioural symptoms.

High rate of absenteeism is seen in the organisation due to the stress factor. As per the survey the amplifiers of stress and their frequency pattern is noted below

• Unfair and demanding bosses or managers ( 29%)

• Unsupportive ,angry and abrasive co-workers ( 31%)

• Inadequate authority for current job responsibilities ( 61%)

• Technology based interruptions( 78%)





Example : An increase rate of " Karoshi" amongst Japanese employees


Managing stress factor:

Applying Stress Management Policy in the organisation can be effective in lowering the rate of absence. Reducing stress through :









Primary prevention which includes

• Ergonomics

• Work and Environmental Design

• Organisational and Management Development


Secondary prevention includes

• Training and Education


Tertiary prevention includes

• developing more sensitive and responsive management systems and enhanced occupational

  health provision


Inaddition to it,

• Reward performance and productivity , not face time spent working

• Live by your values and encourage others to live by theirs

• Build respect based on trust and respect

• Encouraging Individual approaches to some extent - Exercise,Relax, Buiding up Stress Resistance , Diet etc.




A pictorial view of the solution for managing the stress is been shown below :



























c) Cause for absence : Negative Job Attitude in the work environment, Low morale , Dissatisfaction in meeting the social needs.

Managing absence : Motivational theories (Process theories - Maslow and Herzbergs Two factor )


Explaination for cause:


Attitudes :

Job satisfaction, Job Involvement and the Organisational commitment are the three types of job related attitudes. These attitudes taps positive or negative feedback based on the work environment.



 I ) Job satisfaction :

An individuals general attitudes towards work . It can be positive or negative depends on each individual. Satisfaction with the work , with pay, with fellow workers,with supervision,with promotions can be considered as the facets of the job satisfaction.


ii) Job Involvement:

It measures the degree to which a person identifies psychologically with his or her job and considers

his or her perceived performance level output important to self worth.


iii)Organisational commitment:

The employee identifies a particular organisation and its goals and wishes to maintain membership in the organisation.


A negative feedback of the employee for the above three attitudes will result into the absenteeism .




Managing Low morale and negative attitude:

i) Herzberg Two factor Theory


To better understand employees attitudes and motivation in necessary to do a study to determine which factor cause satisfaction and dissatisfaction in an employee.

Fredrick Herzberg developed motivation- hygiene theory to explain these satisfaction-dissatisfaction results.









Hygiene factors : are needed to ensure an employee does not become dissatisfied. They do not lead to higher level of motivation,but without them there is a dissatisfaction.

Motivation factors: are needed in order to motivate an employee into higher performance. These are intrinsic ones.





To manage the absenteeism , management should not only provide hygiene factors but must also provide factors intrinsic to the work itself in order for employees to be satisfied.


Job Enrichment ,Job Enlargement and Job Rotation - are the main factors required for intrinsic motivation which is a continuous improvement process. Following points should be noted to manage the absence of employees :

• Job should have sufficient challenge to utilise the full ability of the employee

• Employees who demonstrate increasing levels of ability should be given increasing level of responsibility

• If a job cannot be designed to use an employees full abilities ,then the firm shoud consider automating the task or replacing the employee with one who has a lower level of skill .

If a person cannot be fully utilised, then there will be a motivation problem.

• Give employees as much control over the mechanisms of task completion as possible

• Hold employees accountable for their performance

• Within limits, let employees set their own performance

• Design jobs so that employees experience accomplishment

• Design jobs so emplyees learn new skills and work procedures.




Ii )Maslow Motivation Theory


  Human behaviours rests on needs ad motives. A need is an expereinced state of deficiency

that pushes one behaviour. A motive pulls human behaviour towards a goal that is predicted.


Three main social needs which an employee looks forward from the organisation

1) Need for achievement : Employees expect a good quality of performance feedback ,

a successful accomplishment of work to be rewarded intrinsically or extrinsically by the managers, looking ahead for challenging tasks and responsibilities.

2) Need for affiliation : A feeling of belonginess, social involvement and group morale is always felt within the employee's .They look ahead to receive social support , affection and consideration in the work place.

3) Need for Power : Looking ahead for frequent attention by others, recognition through promotions, to gain influence and control.


Mc.Clelland(1961) notes that these three are the key social needs which every employee looks for from the organisation. Failure to meet these needs might result into an employee absenteeism


Motivation is one of the pyschological states that influences the performance of an employee.

Managers would consider a motivational concept which derives from Maslows Hierachy of Needs.


The basis of Maslow's motivation theory is that human beings are motivated by unsatisfied needs,and that certain lowe factors needs to be satisfied before higher needs can be satisfied.

According to Maslow, there are general types of needs (physiological, survival, safety, love, and esteem) that must be satisfied before a person can act unselfishly. He called these needs "deficiency needs." As long as we are motivated to satisfy these cravings, we are moving towards growth, toward self-actualization.






Keeping these factors in mind , managers can accordingly manage and measure the requirement to meet social need inorder to avoid the absenteeism.Management should apply the following concepts to achieve the need for social acquirement amongst the employee's thus making them feel better and increasing the work rate in the organisation by reducing the level of absence.


Managing and Measuring Need for Achievement : .

• Use need for achievement as one basis for screening job applicants

• To design jobs with goals that are atleast moderately challenging

• Use it as a promotion factor

• To create a achievement climate in the firm

• Reward employee creativity, to give a positive feedback , institutionalise the role of

idea champions in the firm



Managing and Measuring Need for Affiliation:

 This can be done by encouraging the subordinates to :


• To Be arbitrators of work -group disputes

• to Evaluate the social demands of the job and match employees with a high need for affiliation

• to Be involved in community affairs which parallel work interests

• toDevelop and use as many forms of social rewards as possible in the firm

• Also, Giving a feeling of belongingness, social involvement and group morale.

• Emphasising on the recognition , praise and public acclaim.


Managing and Measuring Need for Power:

• Employees looking for a socialised power should be given a high profile in the organisationa

• Highly skilled managers with socialised power should be assigned to groups with low performance and morale

• Career paths for the socialised managers should not be blocked

• Should be allowed to take a centralised decision which can boost their self-confidence.



A diagrammatic representation is shown below stating how the higher and lower order needs can be








Measure Job Satisfaction :


Prof. Smith , Kendall and Hulins(1975) - Job Descriptive Index (JDI) measures the five facets associated with job satisfaction - nature of work , compensation and benefits , attitudes towards supervisors, relations with co-workers and opportunities for promotion.


Example :

a. Nature of the work itself



____Can see results

b. Compensations and benefits

____ Fair


____ Bad

c. Attitudes towards supervisors

____Knows job well

____Not supervise enough

____Around when needed

d. Relations with co-workers




e. Promotion opportunities

____Good opportunities

____Promotion on ability

____Infrequent promotions

 6. Analyze data:

a. Nature of the work itself------3.8

b. Compensations and benefits----4.2

c. Attitudes towards supervisors----3.9

d. Relations with co-workers-----4.7

e. Promotion opportunities------2.7


Following points can then be analysed:

1) What can you conclude about level of job satisfaction of the emploees?

2) What can you conclude about each of the five specific areas of job satisfaction?

3) What could you do to improve the quality of working life of the employees?


Another measurement tool has been developed by Professor Weiss and it is called the Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire .






Level 2 : Group Level .


Professor Shaw (1981) describes a work gropu as two or more employees who interact with each other, perceive themselves as sharing common interests or goals ,come together to accomplish a meaningful organisational activity. At times, it can happen that one employee may get a feeling of

• inequity amongst it colleagueas

• Less cohesiveness, conflicts in Work Groups


which can result into absenteeism


a )Cause of Absence : Inequity

  Managing Absence : Equity theory


Explaination for the cause:

A negative inequity occurs when the employee feels tht he has received relatively fewer awards than others in proporton to the level of effort that he expended on the job. This process of social comparison is shown below :

Employee rewards compared to Others rewards

Employees inputs (efforts) Others inputs(efforts)




 Managing Inequtiy :


The theory proposes that employees gauge the fairness of their work outcomes in comparison to the work outcomes received by the others who perform comparable jobs. The management should bring the equity principles into picture to manage the absenteeism.

• Inform the employees about salary ranges, pay increases and promotion opportunities.

Before hand

• Avoid secrecy about pay policies and procedures .While it may bot be advisable to encourage employees to compare their levels of pay with others , do make sure that the employees understand the pay ranges, pay brackets and the relationships between high performance and significant rewards.

• Anticipate that certain employees will feel both positive and negative inquity

• Individual should manage by either decreasing input or increasing output (vice-versa)

  to create a balance. It depends also on individual perceptions.



To reduce the rate of absenteeism its very important to balance the i/p and the o/p factors

which is shown in the diagram below.











b) Cause for Absenteeism: Incohesiveness in work groups - Leads to the poor performance and the high rate of absenteeism


Managing Cohesiveness:

A manager can raise the cohesiveness by controlling work groups composition

• Match groups task to the characteristic of group members.

• Seamless match between members qualification and group tasks demands creates high cohesion and maintains group motivation and performance.

• Larger group have more interpersonal conflicts - thus keeping constraint on the group size

cohesive group (3-9)

• Clarity of goals can increase the cohesiveness amongst the groups

• Setting ground rules for tasks like gathering information , evaluating alternatives and making final decisions.


According to Professor Tuckman(1965) work group behaviour is easier to understand if the stages of group development ( forming, storming , norming, performing) are isolated and analysed.

Managing absence will be more easier after understanding this concepts



 c) Cause for Absence : Personal abilities high , but low motivation

  Theory : Expectancy theory


An employee will be much interseted to do his work if it interests him . The motivated employees thinks that their work activities should help them to achieve personally important goals.


Managing Absence:

A manager would always like to know how the employees decide to work hard . Whether a planned reward sysetem - can lead the employees to motivation ?This issues are considered in the expectancy theory which proposes that employee will work hard to get the rewards.

The expectancy theory is always powerful and goal directd and it could be only understood in terms of probabilties that a given behaviour will lead to outcomes valued by the individual.

To manage that managers should able to understand the Vrooms model which is based on three concepts:


1. Valence - Strength of an individual's preference for a particular outcome. For the valence to be positive, the person must prefer attaining the outcome to not attaining it.

2. Instrumentality - Means of the first level outcome in obtaining the desired second level outcome; the degree to which a first level outcome will lead to the second level outcome.

3. Expectancy - Probability or strength of belief that a particular action will lead to a particular first level outcome

Management should use:



Systems that tie rewards very closely to the performance

Mangers should ensure that the rewards provided are deserved and wanted by the recepients

To improve the effect-performance tie, managers should engage in trainin to improve the capabitlitis and improve the belief that added effort will infact lead to better performance








level 3:

Cultural Differences in Motivation


As globalisation and outsourcing grip companies and their workers which to some extent affects the motivation of the employees . Behavioural Mod places the environment front and centre in motivation and it de-emphasises the role of the individual in the motivation process.


Managing Absenteeism :

Bmod places the environment front and center in motivation and it de-emphaises the role of the individual in the motivation process. Bmod is rooted in the work of B.F Skinner .

Prof.Skinner argues that behaviour is a function of its consequences. The main principles of Bmod are the four contigencies of reinforcement. Both the positive and negative reinforcement strengthen behaviour .This might help in managing the absenteeism

  Consequence Consequence

  Presented Removed


Pleasant Consequence Positive Reinforcement Extinction


Unpleasant Consequence Punishment Negative Reinforcement

















Cost of Absenteeism :





Decrease in Productivity

• employees may be carrying an extra workload, or supporting new or replacement staff

• employees may be required to train and orientate new or replacement workers

• staff morale and employee service may suffer

Financial Costs

• overtime or agency cost for replacement workers

• cost of self-insured income protection plans

• premium costs may rise for insured plans



Administrative Costs

• staff time is required to secure replacement employees or to re-assign the remaining employees

• staff time is required to maintain and control absenteeism



According to new survey by Mercer , The Total Financial Impact of Employee Absences ,the total

cost of absence can equal as much as 36% of payroll compared to 15.4% for health care coverage.

Of that figure , 9 % accounts for unplanned absences. Planned absences,like vacation and holidays

average 26.6 %


IHC estimates that 13.4 million working days a year are lost to stress, anxiety and depression

and 12.3 million to back and upper problem. In UK, a whopping cost of £ 11.5 billion was paid out in wages to absent employees and on additional temporary and overtime employees, according to CBI.

  " There will always be a certain level of absenteeism - around 15% - which there is not a lot employers can do about it " - CBI spokesman



Example: Managing Absenteeism in University

  Absent control can often be an important step in reducing the business costs.

Because of competitive pressures, companies can no longer afford to carry unnecessary absence that they may have tolerated in the past.


  It is an expectation that an employee who is hired to perform a job attend work on a regular basis in order that scheduled work assignments can be carried out by the most appropriate staff without disruption to other staff. All University staff are expected, to the greatest extent possible, to create workplace conditions that are conducive to good attendance. When utilising the Attendance Awareness Program, management staff are expected to proceed in a manner that will encourage and motivate their employees to attend work regularly and be a valued contributor to the workplace.


Managing short term and long term absenteeism :-





Measuring Absenteeism:




Absence measurement" is essential in order for management to compare between individual absences and departmental absences. Measuring absence is critical to identify the different patterns of employee absence and target the variables affecting it.





1. Number of days absentNumber of incidents:Pattern of absencesCalculation of average lost time due to illness/injury:

Calculation of average number of incidents due to illness/injury:

This should be done for the period of the fiscal year May 1 B April 30 each year.

# of incidents = Departmental average of incidents


Throughout the 3) Bradford Factor :

• The Bradford Factor is a systems used to calculate a score for each employee's absence is a year. The higher the score, the more disruption the employees absence is causing your company.

• Bradford scores are a way of identifying individuals with serious absence and patterns of absence worthy of further investigation. It helps highlight causes for concern and often is one of the starting points in an attendance procedure

• Using the Bradford Factor helps to discourage excess absenteeism and allows managers to compare employee attendance between different departments, as well as across the company as a whole.




S* S* D = Bradford point score.

D = total number of days absence in last 52 weeks


Has 9 sickdays in a year , 4 are single day absence and 5 are in block

S = 1(1) + 1(1) +1(1) + 1(1) + 1(5) = 5



Has 15 sickdays in a year , 3 block of five days

D = 5 + 5 + 5 = 15

Score = 3 * 3 * 15 = 135

This shows that A has more Bradford score than B even though B has more sick days than A















Royal Bank of ScotlandAs a major company, RBS needs to recruit the best employees it can .


Taylor and scientific management .This theory said that every job could be measred by the amount of work done .Workers would work harder because they would earn more.

Herzberg and the ' two factors' .Herzberg's theory showed that certain motivation factors needed to be in place first. RBS uses a number of factors to motivate its people.



Maslow and hierarchy of needs. This theory showed that workers had to have their

believe that meeting these higher needs for example,by recognising achievement will motivate employees and help the company to grow. It has put in place a number of benefits to meet these needs.



















• • - a strategy used to motivate employees.

Employees can earn a bonus if they reach their tareget- a profit sharing scheme.

RBS supports community projects and charities that its people care about, for example


• • •  

RBS knows its employees are its future and rewards and encourages them.It provides a world-class employment package of benefits for every employee at every level. In RBS, motivation theory comes to life.


Nuclear Decommissiong Authority - NDA Applying Maslow hierarchy of needs and Managerial X and Y Style.

In 2005 UK government brought NDA to manage the UK's nuclear sites clean up and waste management.NDA determines the overall strategy and priorities for managing decommissioning.


Achieving a motivated workforce is neither cheap nor easy.However, the expense and effort can be well rewarded.



NDA managers and leaders realised that pay alone wont satisfy ,employees looks for self esteem. They applied Maslow hierarchy of needs to meet the self actualisation of employee. For example, pension schemes help to meet safety needs. Self actualisation may be reached through opportunities,promotions.

In 1960 Douglas McGregor described two distinctive styles of management:

Theory Y saw self motivated employees with complex needs and a natural urge




• • • • • • •  


• : Traditional method of payment only if the output is relevant.

• :Rewards employees who achieve their agreed targets.

• : Eg: a bonus payment to achieve greater productivity. Non- financial rewards which form part of a renumeration package. Examples: includes company cars,medical insurance.

At NDA , staff become proficient across a range of skills making work intersting and challenging. It also builds the flexibility into the workforce by giving .

• : increasing the scope of the job role by giving workers extra duties or responsibilties.

• : moving an employee from job to job.

Inaddition to these NDA applied to ensure that employees are happy in their organisational environment.


Conclusion :

NDA in particular operates in an industry where attracting and retaining skilled staff is a






Example 3: Changing work patterns at Llyods TSB to manage stress.

Llyods TSB is one of the Uk' s biggest organisation.It employs over 66,000 people

Its been known as one of the best employers for providing flexibility for its staff.By following the


Employees needs motivation and committment. Research shows that the employees are more productive and experience less stress when they have control over the hours they work.

of well qualified staff.

Achieving healthy work life balance is utmost important to employer and to employees as well.


Managers at Lyods TSB encouraged flexible working patterns.

• •