Latest News » Study: A more flexible work schedule can help boost sleep time

Being allowed to work from home can help employees get healthier amounts of sleep each night.

Being allowed to work from home can help employees get healthier amounts of sleep each night.

Regardless of their job title or industry, millions of workers all over America suffer from the same universal problem: Lack of sleep. Not getting enough rest each night is a serious health risk that not only leaves anyone feeling exhausted and irritated the next morning, but can also raise the possibility for dangerous conditions such as stroke, hypertension, heart disease and reduced memory support. But a new study finds that accommodating a more flexible schedule in the workplace can help employees get all of their work done and get the magic number of seven to eight hours of sleep each night.

According to The Oregonian, a team of researchers compared the sleep habits of two groups of employees who worked 45 hours per week: one spent their work weeks entirely in the office, while the second spread their 45 weekly work hours through whichever locations they wanted, be it at home, in the office or somewhere else. And while there wasn't an enormous difference in sleep between the two groups, the latter still reported getting more Zs than the former.

Interestingly enough, the study team wasn't even trying to prove something about the connection between flexible work schedules and sleep (or lack thereof), but was rather trying to find a correlation between resolving disputes at home that arise from work-home conflicts. Flexible work schedules have become increasingly popular in recent years, as giving employees the opportunity to work from home has also helped them to better juggle their workplace and family responsibilities. By helping to smooth over these disputes at home, flexible schedules have been found to not only improve home life with families, but also improve an employee's sleep habits.

"Without addressing it directly, we still improved the sleep of hundreds of employees a year after we saw them," said study researcher Ryan Olson, of the Oregon Health & Science University, in an official statement.

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