(WPRI) -- In this uncertain economy, three things are clear when it comes to jobs- how long we're working is changing, where we're working is changing, and flexibility is the new norm.
The good news is that employers are starting to catch on that being flexible means they'll get more out of their employees. Recent statistics show that 77 percent of employers now offer flex time. That's way up from 66 percent just a few years ago.
"I love it. Never had a company that offered this type of benefit, and it's been one that's been very helpful for me," said flex worker Kim Ziprik.
Choosing where you work is now an option for 63 employees, which is almost twice the amount from a few years ago.
"Anything we can do to help them get their work done and try to keep work-life balance is what we're interested in doing," said human resource manager Barbara Bell-Dees.
Another change in the workplace is the rise of the hybrid job.
"Instead of hiring someone for one specific skill set, they're trying to integrate someone who has multiple skill sets so they can reduce their cost of hire," said Empower Me Corporation CEO Adrienne Graham.
James Snider fills a hybrid position at his current job. He handles marketing, sales, and production, but after being unemployed for a year and a half, he was thrilled just to be working again.
"For somebody who's been out of work for an extended period of time, particularly the older job seeker, this is going to be something more and more of us need to do to get back into the game," he said.
Something else that seems to be shifting in the workplace is phased-out retirement. Employees don't just clock out one last time when they hit a magic age. Also, many retirees are going back to their old jobs as contract workers or consultants. The downside is that the pay can temporarily reduce their Social Security benefits since they're earning income.
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