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I have been woking in the flex system since I was a highschool summer student. At first I was suprised that I could come in at 10 and then leave at 4 if I felt that I had everything done that needed to get done. I began to see the real benifit of this system when my position was extened to a part-time job. As long as I put in all of my hours and completed my projects on time, there was no worries about when I came in... or left. This was a real benifit because I could manage school and work effectivly. This ment that I could keep my grades up and make money at the same time. This didn't apply for the usual part-time jobs that I had worked.
As I moved on to University I really came to appreciate the flex system. Mostly it was for the same reasons as mentioned above; grades and money. It also allowed me to get some 'real-word' experience because I was involed in some 'real' projects. If classes were done early or I had big breaks in my schedule I would come into work for a few hours. Again, as long as I put in my time and completed all my projects, all was cool.
Along the way I have worked full time in the summers. When you are at work all day and under the gun the last thin that you want is more pressure. Sometimes I would put in long, long days for weeks on end, but when I needed a rest I took advantage of the flex system. It really saved me from burn out. I think that it also takes pressure off of managers, if the system is used properly. This way management doesn't have to check-up on their employees to see if they were in at 8am and didn't leave before 4pm.
As you can see, the flex system has worked well for me and I have seen much success with it. However, I have also seen the down side. Employees that misuse the system. It can create problems for the rest of the team. If the team is using the system properly then the gears will turn properly, but if a team member is not pulling thier weight then things begin to break down. This is no different than the traditional system, but it is harder to pin point the root of the problem. Management then has to spend more time to find out why things are not as smooth as they once were.
In conclusion, through my experiences I think that the flex system is a great idea and works really well. Let it be known that I have worked more in the flex system then out of it, but the positions that I have had that follow the flex paradigm have been far beter than those who follow the old system. I guess that I am considered the new breed of employee in a totally different work environment from that of even a decade ago. It is exciting to see where the work environment will evolve or possibly digress from here.
I hope that this view helps your case. If you want more info, or need a test case, please feel free to /msg me and we can get in contact.
"We rock the body to rock the party ... until the party rocks the body"
De La Soul
In reply to Re: On programmer schedules and productivity: The view of a Uni Coop