Flexibility in the workplace

"Flexibility in where, when and how work is undertaken is a priority for most employees at different times in their careers if employers are to attract and retain staff they need to offer and support flexibility at their workplace".

Workplace flexibility is a critical component of any attraction and retention strategy. Australian and international research clearly indicates that employees, be they Baby Boomers, Gen X or Gen Y, perceive flexibility in when, where and how they achieve their work commitments to be a key factor in maintaining their motivation and commitment to their employer. Best Practice employers have put processes in place that ensure their responses and management of flexible work options meet the requirements of the legislation, are non-discriminatory and address the needs of the business and the employee.

All Roles Flex

A new concept implemented by organisations such as Telstra, ANZ Bank, and the ASX promotes All Roles Flex. Supported by their CEO's the organisation's promote the belief that all roles can be undertaken flexibly, and that the employee does not need to justify or disclose their reasons for their application. So saying No means that the manager has to demonstrate very strong business reasons for that decision. This approach demands a massive shift in corporate culture, behaviours and attitudes. This highlights the need for manager education and support.

Can managers manage flexibility issues?flex illustrations 1

The data collected by Managing Work|Life Balance and other international researchers has found that organisations are often hindered in their attempts to implement flexible work arrangements by leaders in their organisation who find it difficult to change their views about the value of flexible working.

Furthermore,many managers/leaders feel they are not competent enough to manage flexibility within their work teams. This reinforces the need for organisations to take action and not only develop a workplace culture that is flexible and responsive to the needs of employees, but also to skill and educate their managers.

Making Flexibility Work @ Work

Our consulting team can assist you to make flexibility work through:

  • The development of a flexible work strategy that will contribute to your "Employer Brand" and assist in the attraction and retention of staff.
  • Identifying the needs of diverse demographic groups such as mature-aged staff who are looking for different flexibility options
  • The provision of advice on developing a workplace culture that is responsive to the needs of staff who need and want to work flexibly
  • Implement an All Roles Flex Strategy,
  • Developing a suite of flexible work options, policies and guidelines that are compliant with current legislation
  • Establishing an ongoing communication strategy to ensure that flexibility is kept in the spotlight, and managers and staff know what is available and how a flexible work arrangement can be established
  • Facilitating workshops and training sessions for managers to skill them in "holding the conversation" with employees who request a flexible work arrangement, and establishing flexible working within their teams
  • Evaluating the success of your strategy.

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Making Flexibility Work: If you are a member of Linkedin, click here to see our Discussion Page. (If you are not a member, you can also click this link to join.)