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Lately you read a lot about: Trust work, home office, teleworking, sabbatical, flexible working hours, job sharing, 4-day work week, and much more. Basically, about work-life balance and the associated megatrend New Work.


On the one hand, these new work models are intended to counteract the shortage of skilled workers, since rigid predefined working hours and models in particular have had their day with upcoming workers, and on the other hand, the pandemic was the fire accelerator of the New Work megatrend. Another reason for rethinking is the simple fact that the baby boomers are about to retire.


For many companies, that's a challenge right now and a hot topic of discussion for both CEOs and HR managers.


Granted, some wordings are new, but even before the pandemic, many of these models were a lived reality at PIDSO. Unlike many other SMEs that are currently dealing with this issue, we can already draw on many years of experience.


As many of you know, we are a high-tech antenna, antenna system and radar technology company specializing in customized solutions - a niche player in the B2B sector.

In this article, we want to share with you how we have managed to find and retain highly qualified professionals.


One answer to this is to deal with benefits at an early stage and the question of how we can position ourselves as an attractive employer.

We also asked ourselves how best to balance work and education/leisure. At the time, many of our employees were still students, either about to finish their studies or in the middle of them. Our primary goal was to recruit them as full-time employees once they had completed their studies. In order for this to succeed, we first and foremost had to increase employee satisfaction and, as a result, their loyalty to our company.


After several discussions with our employees and the resulting considerations, it was clear to us - flexible working hours and flexible working time arrangements are one of the keys to success. For this reason, we have offered our employees flexible working hours and flexible working time arrangements from the very beginning. Our generous flexitime model extends from early in the morning until late in the evening.


This flexitime model is still highly appreciated by all our employees today - it suits almost every life situation, as well as early risers and late risers. We have employees who start as early as 6 a.m. and those who don't get going until around noon. The amazing thing is that the organization among them works very well and the quality of the work is impeccable. Even the late risers are present at the obligatory morning meetings and participate with enthusiasm. Parents are also very grateful for this model - regardless of whether a doctor's appointment with the child or similar is imminent, private appointments can be easily organized and reconciled with work.


When we realized that we had found fertile ground with this - for the time - unconventional benefit, we decided to expand our benefits further. Further discussions and brainstorming sessions followed. After some time, we expanded our offer to include the student sabbatical benefit. Our student employees now had the opportunity to work full-time during the vacations, for example, and then take 1-3 months off, either to prepare for important exams or to write their master's or doctoral thesis. This benefit, too, was not yet self-evident and widespread at that time, but it was already in line with today's spirit of the times.


But was PIDSO thus already a pioneer in the field of work-life balance and new work? In our experience, we say: Yes, we were. The flexible scheduling and working hours helped us to retain employees in the long term. Employees were able to organize their work in such a way that it could be better integrated into their daily lives. Independent work was also an important aspect, as it enabled our employees to contribute their ideas and help shape the future of tomorrow.


In our experience, employees both then and now are looking for more than just a job. They want to work for a company where they can make a difference and/or help shape the future of tomorrow. At PIDSO, we know how important it is to give our employees the opportunity to take responsibility for their work and make a difference. For this reason, we also encourage them to contribute their ideas and take on new challenges. To do this, we offer them a supportive environment in which they can grow and develop professionally. Our employees know that their contributions are valued and that they are part of a team working toward a common goal. This sense of purpose and belonging is another key factor in our employees' satisfaction and loyalty to our company.


So what are our key strategies:

One of our key strategies is to offer flexible working arrangements that can be very attractive to employees. These can include flexible working hours and the option of teleworking (we have increasingly offered teleworking since Corona, and this measure also has a positive impact on employee satisfaction and employer attractiveness). These arrangements can help employees achieve a better work-life balance, which has become increasingly important to job seekers in recent years, as it encompasses more than the home office option alone. A study by Randstad found that work-life balance is one of the most important factors for job seekers in Austria, and we can confirm this.


Another important benefit we have going for us is continuous training and professional development opportunities. Many of our employees appreciate the opportunity to learn and develop professionally. In addition, this benefit can help attract and retain talented professionals. This can include on-the-job training opportunities, mentoring programs, or funding for external training and certifications.


In addition, SMEs (Small and Mid-sized Enterprise) can focus on creating a positive work culture, which can be just as important as specific benefits. This includes fostering a sense of community and camaraderie among employees, offering regular team-building activities, and providing opportunities for feedback and open communication. To be honest, the last point is currently working better and worse for us - we are working on improving our error culture as well as constructive feedback communication - because, as we have found, this also has to be learned first - by us as well as by our employees.


Of course, every company is different and has its own challenges and opportunities when it comes to attracting and retaining top talent. However, by focusing on these key strategies, SMEs can also present themselves as attractive employers and build a strong team of skilled professionals. Because as we know, unlike large companies, SMEs often don't have the financial means or resources like these to respond to all the latest trends and keep up, such as in-house fitness room or childcare center, and many more.


But what is the way forward today? Work-life balance is an increasingly important topic and is at the center of New Work, as well as the promotion of employee health. Today, more than ever, companies have to respond to the needs of their employees and find individual solutions. PIDSO has also implemented additional benefits in recent years, and we are thinking about how we can do even more for the work-life balance of our employees in the future without exceeding our own financial framework.


Our experience shows that benefits are an important factor in attracting highly qualified employees and retaining them in the long term. But we have also learned that not all benefits are equally important to all employees. While for some, flexible working hours are paramount, for others, social benefits such as snacks and fruit are of great importance. Yes, you read that right, the so often quoted fruit basket. Ultimately, it depends on the individual's life situation, position and age.


Maybe one of you is interested in becoming part of our team. If so - here is our career page https://www.pidso.com/en/jobs

If there is no job opening that appeals to you, we are always open to receiving unsolicited applications.