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Case study

How flexible working is a key to enabling more women to develop and grow their careers at Liberty

Liberty’s approach to agile working is a key to enabling more women to develop and grow their careers in the business. On International Women’s Day, Miriam Gourgel, HR Coordinator, discusses the difference this has made to her work and family life.

I’ve been with Liberty for nearly eight years, having joined the business after working in the retail business.

In my last job, I’d progressed to HR administrator which inspired me to want to develop a career in HR.

When I joined Liberty, I had little HR experience and no  formal qualifications. However, as a company committed to skills development, Liberty offered me the chance to work towards my Level 3 and Level 5 CIPD qualifications and to build my experience and knowledge.

Liberty has always been supportive of agile  working where it’s possible but before the pandemic I was largely working in the office with some ad hoc home working.

With the changes that have been introduced since 2020, it’s broken the bias between office and agile working. The focus on hybrid  ways of working has really benefited my wellbeing and work-life balance.

We have the opportunity to manage our own weekly working hours which now allows me to work from home on a more regular basis and just go into the office when needed because it suits the nature of my role.

This has been a massive change in my lifestyle for the better. It enables me to take my son to school and pick him up, saving me the need for childcare around school hours. It means big financial saving as well as being able to fit my working hours around my home life.

This flexibility means that I don’t work standard business hours of 8-5 because I start working earlier in the morning before I take my son to school, and then work a bit later in the evening after I’ve collected him. If there is a need for me to go into the office, I’m able to finish in time to do the school run and finish my day at home.

Working for a company that really embraces and encourages hybrid  working wherever possible really has made such a difference.

I’ve found that I’m much more productive and can manage my workload better, and I’m also encouraged to spend time on my own personal development.

It’s also an important part of Liberty’s commitment to become a more equal workplace. In many cases women still bear more of the responsibility when it comes to child and caring responsibilities and flexible working means that we’ll be able to attract and retain more women in the business and support them to develop into senior roles.

I’m proud to work for a company that places such importance on this and I’m looking forward to seeing how it continues to develop in the future.