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For Workers, Less Flexible Companies | The New York Times

19 May 2014—Stephen Sweet was mentioned on www.nytimes.com.

In today’s age of connectivity, such arrangements might seem commonplace. But while more employers say they are offering flexible work arrangements — like working from home, starting and ending the days a bit earlier or later — they are still typically offered only to certain employees, and are often informally negotiated with a sympathetic manager, workplace experts say.

“A lot of the existing research assumes companies are flexible if they report that they are. The reality is very different,” said Stephen Sweet, a sociologist at the Sloan Center on Aging and Work at Boston College and co-author of a recent study on flexible work arrangements. His study, of 545 employers, found that only 20 percent of companies offered a variety of flexible options to most of their workers.

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