Businesses should offer flexible working at an early stage in the recruitment process to widen their pool of good quality applicants.  This is only one of the many recommendations that the CBI has made in its report this week - aimed at encouraging more inclusive workplaces.

"Inclusive workplaces give firms the chance to get ahead of their competitors by making better decisions, through diverse teams which draw on a wider range of ideas and experiences."  says CBI president Paul Drechsler.

At present, employees have a statutory right to request flexible working but the CBI suggestion is that employers should advertise flexible working opportunities with job vacancies.  This, says the CBI report, will mean that the organisation is better able to attract and retain staff, help them to develop in-demand skills and innovate in ways that help their business grow.

For more on Flexible working requests: