Research Manager Patrick discusses how flexible working allows him to spend more time with his family
“Working flexibly boosts my productivity and enables me to balance my work with my home life.”
Name: Patrick Rusby
Job Title: Quantitative Research Manager, IDS
How has Sky’s flexible working policy personally benefitted you? Having recently become a dad, I’ve found that our commitment to flexible working has really helped me fit my work in around my family life. For example, when I’ve needed to, I’ve been able to shift my day to either start or finish earlier or later. I also work from home 1 or 2 days per week, so when those emergencies happen, and they do, I’ve always been able to put my wife and son first.
Do you feel you have the correct resources to work flexibly? I’m fortunate that all I need to do my job on a day to day basis are a laptop, the internet and a phone. I’m able to remotely access files through our VPN, make use of online tools and speak to my colleagues by phone or over Skype. I could practically do my job from the moon!
How does your management and colleagues support your flexible working? It wouldn’t be possible to work flexibly without the support of my manager, colleagues and stakeholders. We’re all committed to flexible working, so they don’t insist I’m in the office every day, but equally I arrange my ‘work from home’ days around my work commitments. The most important thing is that there’s a mutual trust and respect, as well as an understanding that flexible working is actually in everyone’s best interests; it boosts my productivity and enables me to balance my work with my home life.
What difference has the flexible working made to your personal life? Flexible working makes a big difference. As my son, Arthur has gone through different phases, I’ve adapted my hours to fit, from starting and finishing earlier so I was home in time to put him to bed, to starting and finishing later so I was at home in the morning. I’ve also been able to fit work around things like doctor’s appointments, which was especially helpful when my wife was unable to drive. The bottom line for me is that if I had to be in the office from 9 to 5 each day, I’d hardly see my son except for at weekends. I know that this is a reality for many parents, so I really do appreciate working at a company that places importance on family life.
Can you describe a day in the life of a typical flexible day? Flexible days can vary of course, but yesterday was quite typical. Arthur was awake by 6am, so we hung out from 6am to 9am. When he had a nap, I prepared for my day by checking and sending a couple of emails on my phone. Most of my day was spent writing up a research debrief, which I was collaborating on with a colleague using Skype. I had three meetings during the day, all of which were also done over Skype. At 5.30 I put Arthur to bed, before doing another half hour’s work, then switched my phone and computer off!