Rural businesses need to 'embrace innovative ways of working to recruit and retain the best staff', according to a business owner.

Louise Hudson, owner of Hudson LM chartered accountants based in Whittington, said the concept of the 'Results Only Work Environment' (ROWE) had been a big success.

She said: “Creating opportunities for our staff to work when and where they want is key to retaining, recruiting and motivating our team.

“We have embraced this by adopting a concept that was first created in America in the 2000s called the ROWE, which essentially means people can work at a time and place of their choosing.

“For it to work well, excellent communication between the team is vital, and everyone has individual and group targets to work towards to ensure they know what’s expected of them and we keep our business goals on track.

“We have boundaries in place to ensure we maintain high levels of customer service such as ensuring there are always team members present in the office to handle communications.”

Louise said flexible working was something that all businesses – particularly SMEs in rural areas – should consider.

“From our point of view, the use of the latest technology including cloud and VoIP systems makes this system work well, but I believe it’s a viable option for any office-based business,” she added.

“Although we are a professional practice, we are based in rural Whittington so giving people ways in which they can work to suit their lifestyles and timescales has a big benefit on wellbeing and mental health.”

For more information about Hudson LM chartered accountants, visit their website at