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76% of South Africans confirm that flexible working improves staff retention

Attract and retain top staff with flexible working

Business people in South Africa reveal flexible working is often the make-or-break of job offers.  82% reveal that they would choose one job over another similar one, if it offered flexible working. A staggering 76% confirm that flexible working also improves staff retention, finds the latest survey by Regus, the global workplace provider.

Recruitment is an expensive process that many global businesses are keen to reduce. It's cheaper to keep your employees than to lose them. A new recruit only achieves up to 60% output in the first three months of employment and takes at least six months for an employee to become 'value-adding. [1]What measures should businesses be prioritising to slash hiring costs, attract and retain top staff? Flexible working, respondents reveal, provides a solution to all three.

The survey, canvassing the opinions of more than 20,000 senior executives and business owners across 95 countries, confirms that in South Africa flexible working can be used to avoid employee churn (and the consequent expense of recruitment agencies) as 75% of respondents point to flexible working as a perk that attracts top talent.

The research also found that:

  • 74% of respondents say offering flexible working makes employees more loyal;
  • 59% of workers would actually turn down a job that ruled out flexible working;
  • 62% say they would have stayed longer in their last position had flexible working been an option.

Commenting on the study, Kirsten Morgendaal, Area Director at Regus says: “Hiring and retaining top talent is an age-old priority for successful businesses, but not all companies can afford to offer golden bonuses or mouth-watering salaries while remaining competitive. Stemming churn is also vital to avoid incurring recruitment agency costs and the inconvenience of starting the hiring process.

“Flexible working, which is lower cost than fixed office working, offers the attractive perks of lower stress and better work:life balance to existing and prospective employees, and provides a low cost solution to attracting and retaining those top workers.  It’s also striking how mainstream the perk of flexible working has become, with many respondents actually choosing their jobs on the basis of flexibility.”

In South Africa demand for flexible office space has increased sharply in 2013, with enquiries in July and August reaching an all-time high. Overall demand for offices was 43% higher than the 2012 average, and Regus' new locations in Cape Town (Stellenbosch), along with five new centres in Gauteng (Pretoria, Rosebank, Sunninghill, East Rand and Westrand), will help meet that demand.

One company already benefitting from Regus’ presence in Gauteng is US-based Innovolt, a leader in intelligent asset management technology. When it set up a subsidiary in South Africa, it outsourced all non-core functions, including its office space. General Manager Graeme Van der Velde comments, “We use Regus offices in Johannesburg and Cape Town to house staff and enjoy a good presence, whilst reducing admin. Our sales staff use different Regus offices as they travel around South Africa, and we can hire a boardroom whenever we need to present to clients without having to pay for the space all year round. The Regus network has been very helpful to us as we grow our business in South Africa.”

[1] FSP Business, Wits staff exodus highlights the importance of employee retention, 01 October 2013


Regus is the global workplace provider.

Its network of more than 1,700 business centres in 100 countries provides convenient, high-quality, fully serviced spaces for people to work, whether for a few minutes or a few years. Companies like Google, Toshiba and GlaxoSmithKline choose Regus so that they can work flexibly and make their businesses more successful.

The key to flexible working is convenience and so Regus is opening wherever its 1.5million members want support - city centres, suburban districts, shopping centres and retail outlets, railway stations, motorway service stations and even community centres.

Founded in Brussels, Belgium, in 1989, Regus is based in Luxembourg and listed on the London Stock Exchange. For more information, please visit: