Centrica has announced that it will continue to evolve flexible working for its 6,000 contact centre employees and, in doing so, will transform how it serves customers.
'Flexible First' responds to polls and focus groups that revealed that most people working for Centrica value the flexibility of homeworking with getting the team together in the office for collaboration. As a result, Centrica colleagues will not return to working permanently in offices once COVID-19 restrictions are lifted.
The new way of working, which has been designed with feedback and involvement from more than 5,000 colleagues, will enable those working at one of Centrica's sites across the country to have flexibility and choice about whether to work from home or an office, with the premise that meeting customers' needs are paramount, as is ensuring the safety of all of Centrica colleagues.
This flexibility will provide the opportunity for contact centre colleagues to focus on customer service whilst benefiting from an improved work-life balance to do things like manage childcare, caring responsibilities or getting fit.
With more people choosing to work flexibly, the company will adapt to ensure the safety and wellbeing of colleagues. Centrica is a committed to putting wellbeing first, focusing on caring for one another, raising awareness of the tools in place to support mental, physical and financial wellbeing - and how colleagues can make the most of them.
To make sure there is a smooth and safe experience when coming into an office, Centrica has developed an app that makes the process as simple as booking a seat on a plane. The app will meet the needs of colleagues with disabilities and those with particular equipment requirements, enabling them to select a desk that best suits their personal needs.
'When the pandemic took hold, our customer agents quickly adapted to working from home, and we learned a lot about how we can do things differently and work more flexibly. We've listened to the views of our people and want to give them the flexibility to work in a way that suits their individual needs and ensures that our customers' needs are met. It's important for the success of our business that we have happy colleagues who feel empowered and included, and that's why our Flexible First approach has been led by colleagues every step of the way.'
Chris O'Shea, Group Chief Executive, Centrica
'Being able to work flexibly is wonderful. As a working mum, it's good to know that I have a choice when it comes to deciding where I work from, and, no matter where I am, Centrica will support and equip me with everything I need to continue focusing on delivering the best outcome for our customers.'
Ferdousara Haque, Customer Service Agent, British Gas
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