European law firm Fieldfisher has introduced regular home working opportunities in the UK, following a successful pilot scheme in the firm's Dispute Resolution practice.
The home working policy, which is a part of a broader push to introduce more agile working practices across the firm, will allow lawyers to work from home for up to one day per week subject to their being no detrimental effect on client service. Support staff may also request to work from home on an occasional basis where appropriate.
Michael Chissick, Fieldfisher managing partner, said: "Our agile working policy goes beyond simply approving flexible working requests for parents, although it dovetails well with our desire to be a great workplace for them. It is about improving overall operational efficiency, responsiveness and client delivery whilst providing a better work-life balance and flexibility for all. Regular or occasional home working, for example, can reduce travel time as well as office-based distractions, and can enable fee-earners to start work earlier or continue working later to meet client needs or focus on particular tasks.
"As a firm we have invested in new technology over recent years that means we are now well placed to have this progressive policy, allowing even more home working across our UK offices."
The firm, whose offices are entirely open plan, has been working on ways to introduce more agile working practices and has recently introduced a core hours policy for some of its Business Services departments.
Chissick said: "Home working won't always be possible – there will be weeks when our lawyers need to be in the office each day to meet client needs – but this is about being as flexible as possible while ensuring our clients still receive first class service. We've provided guidance to enable home working to be as seamless as possible and, thanks to the technology that's in use across the firm, there should be no noticeable difference for clients or colleagues."
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