Happiness is Flextime
Applied Research in Quality of Life, Forthcoming
12 Pages Posted: 11 May 2017
Date Written: March 2, 2017
We study how working schedule flexibility (flextime) affects happiness. We use a US General Social Survey (GSS) pooled dataset containing the Quality of Worklife and Work Orientations modules for 1998, 2002, 2006, 2010, and 2014. We retain only respondents who are either full-time or part-time employees on payrolls. For flextime to be associated with greater happiness, it has to be more than just sometimes flexible or slight input into one’s work schedule, that is, little flextime does not increase happiness. But substantial flextime has large effect on happiness–the size effect is about as large as that of household income, or about as large as one-step increase in self-reported health, such as up from good to excellent health. Our findings provide support for both public and organizational policies that would promote greater work schedule flexibility or control for employees.
Keywords: Happiness; Flexible Work; Workplace Flexibility; Work Schedules; Well-Being
JEL Classification: J21; J22; J22; E03
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation