Flexible hours for office workers aim to ease traffic

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Flexible hours for office workers aim to ease traffic
By Ashfaq Ahmed, Staff Reporter GULF NEWS Published: October 02, 2007, 23:09

Dubai: Government departments have been asked by the Dubai Executive Council to adopt flexible working hours to improve their performance.

The system would not only benefit government departments but would also dramatically alleviate traffic congestion on the roads, the Council says.

“We expect up to a 30 per cent decrease in traffic congestion, especially during peak hours if flexible working hours are adopted by both the private and public sectors,” an RTA official told Gulf News.

The General Secretariat of the Dubai Executive Council has sent a letter to all government departments urging them to apply flexible working hours.

The system is in line with Dubai’s strategic plan 2015 launched by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, calling for the creation of an ideal work environment

Positive environment

Flexible working hours would ensure a positive work environment ideal for government employees to serve customer needs, a DEC statement said.

A Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) official told Gulf News the RTA has also proposed a change in the private sector’s working pattern to ease traffic and it has been having talks with major companies.

“Based on our studies, we have categorised three sectors for flexible working hours. They are public and private sectors and schools. In addition to having flexible workings hours within the private and public sectors, we want to have a “window” between the timings of these categories,” the official said.

Municipality already working on system

Dubai Municipality has already started working on applying a flexible working hours system for its employees, said an official.

“The system aims to improve the performance of staff and extract the maximum out of official working hours. One of the purported objectives is also to help solve the traffic woes of office-goers, especially during rush hour,” he said.

He said the system neither proposes to cut the total working hours nor staff attendance.

The Municipality, on an experimental basis, is considering implementing three timings for checking in and checking out of staff. They are 6.30am to 1.30pm, 7.30am to 2.30pm, and 8.30am to 3.30pm.

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