11th April 2024

Flexibility in the workplace: my experience at Civic Engineers


At Civic Engineers, our teams benefit from a supportive, flexible and friendly environment. We are passionate about fostering a workplace that is not only inclusive, but also welcoming, and an environment where every person can be their authentic selves and thrive together. To support our team’s work life balance, we provide hybrid working with flexible start and finish times.  

And as a new flexible working bill comes into effect, we’re celebrating the benefits of flexible working in the workplace. Angela Watcyn-Jones, our Executive Administrator and Governance Lead, shares how our flexible approach has supported her career: 

“Being a parent is my most important job and, without doubt, the hardest. Responsible for nurturing my children, ensuring they get their five a day of fruit and vegetables, cajoling them to complete homework, providing sport kits, uniforms, book bags, art projects, mopping up tears and managing their busy social calendars – it’s no mean feat. In combination with employment, my life as a working parent is chaotic to say the least. Whilst it can be a tough juggling act, the flexibility afforded to me at Civic Engineers enables me to embrace my responsibilities as both a parent and an employee.” 

“In practice, I have the flexibility to start my day a little later, so I can drop my children to school or leave work a bit earlier to do school pick up. If the children are ill, or there is a school assembly or sports day, I can take the time I need to attend, and then make up my work hours across the week. It’s a complex balancing act navigating both roles, and I greatly value the flexibility to manage my time to ensure my commitments at work and at home aren’t impacted.” 

“Flexible working gives me the opportunity to grow my career alongside being a great Mum. I never miss school events, I am present for mealtimes, to help practice spellings, read bedtime stories; all the precious moments of watching my children grow. I relish being able to spend time with my children at a time when they want to spend time with me – I know this will disappear surprisingly quickly!  

“Whilst this flexibility in working hours may seem a small thing to some, it really can make a real difference to others and encourage parents to return to work. Having flexibility means it is more than achievable.” 

Laurie Latham, our Head of Quality and Risk Management, adds his experience of flexible working at Civic Engineers:  

“My wife, Sophie (the most patient woman on the planet), now runs her own architecture practice. Back when we decided to get married however, we were both in the early stages of our chosen career paths and had made a prenuptial promise to each other: to equally share the joys and trials of childcare and always support each other’s career aspirations. It was a good promise, if not tinged with optimism and a slight naivety about the complexities of maintaining two full-time jobs with children.  

“Presently, amid London’s chaos, where the cost of living is skyrocketing so dramatically that even your morning cup of coffee starts to feel like a luxury item, I regularly find myself trying to balance these domestic books. It’s not an easy task, especially when one child is on the cusp of adulthood while the other still believes in the tooth fairy. My son George, seven, is a bundle of energy with an insatiable curiosity, and my daughter Leah, nearly seventeen, is navigating the tempest of teenage years. And their school holidays? They conspire against us, never aligning.  

“Fortunately, Civic Engineers is one of the few companies that understands the delicate dance of modern parenthood. They offer something precious: flexibility. The option to work from home, to start a little late, or finish a little early. As a man, I’ve found this particularly liberating. The world often forgets that many fathers want to be in the thick of it, amidst the school runs, homework, mealtimes, bedtime routines, and yes, even the dreaded teenage angst.   

“So here I am, a parent, responsible for the well-being of little humans who depend on us for everything, doing my best to be present and contributing to the tapestry of our children’s memories in a meaningful way. Without flexibility in the workplace, I’m not sure this would be at all possible.”

Flexibility in the workplace: my experience at Civic Engineers