31573288_MA recent study by Indeed.com found that 51% of job seekers say “flexible hours” is one of the top three factors they look for when applying for a new position. In addition, searches via Indeed using terms like “telecommute” and “work from home” increased by over 30% during 2017. One thing is clear: the ability to work a flexible schedule is becoming increasingly desirable and for good reason.

It allows more family time. For years, working parents have complained about being unable to spend quality family time with the kids. Flexible hours provide working parents the opportunity to watch their kids grow while making an income.

It’s cost effective for everyone involved. Telecommuting is convenient for employees and employers alike. It saves on gas money and carbon emissions and makes renting office space or cubicles unnecessary. Since most business can be conducted online, why invest in a brick and mortar location?

It encourages outside-the-box thinking. Over time, a traditional office environment can become stuffy and oppressive. Even the best leadership teams can experience low morale and in-team bickering. Allowing employees to work from home or a co-working location encourages them to work when they’re most inspired.

If you’re an employer who doesn’t already offer flexible hours, now is the right time to consider making the transition. As the job market becomes more and more competitive, any advantage you have over the competition can help you find and keep the best talent.