Skip to content

Flex for Success: 5 Practices That Build a Flexible Workforce

   
Flex for Success: 5 Practices That Build a Flexible Workforce

This report released from CEW in partnership with Bain & Company and the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) – highlights how business leaders have a unique opportunity to permanently embed flexibility to fully realise its benefits.

Download Report

Download Media Release

Flexible work supports diversity and inclusion, particularly gender equality and gender balance, which we know results in better business profitability. COVID-19 has radically accelerated the acceptability of flexible and remote work, resulting in more leaders and employees embracing the benefits of working flexibly than ever before,

Sue Morphet

President, Chief Executive Women.

“This report shows that while progress to date has been significant, leaders need to take action now to ensure benefits continue to outweigh any perceived challenges in the longer term. Companies must ensure that senior management personally embrace flexible and remote working, so that it is normalised throughout employee ranks, regardless of seniority or gender.”

The report highlights case studies showing how corporate Australia is implementing and learning about flexibility for employees to drive business results.

A key feature of the report is a diagnostic tool to help businesses assess their current flexible working arrangements to ensure it remains central to their long-term strategy.

Flex for Success outlines 5 effective ways companies across corporate Australia have built a flexible workforce before and during the COVID-19 pandemic:

  1. Ensure flexibility is flexible – allow employees to drive what flexible working options they want (for example, empowering them to switch shifts without formal management approval) and understand that flexibility means different things for different people.
  2. Link flexibility to strategy and the customer – use flexibility to empower teams to identify their own ways to achieve their organisation’s strategic goals.
  3. Model flexibility – set a cultural example with senior leaders as role models and eliminate the emphasis on flexibility only applying to women as traditional primary caregivers.
  4. Encourage and enable team flexibility – encourage teams to create their own standards (such as avoiding in-person meetings on days or times that are popular for working from home) and seek regular feedback to establish what’s working and what needs to change.
  5. Support individuals to work flexibly – invest in training to help leaders get the best out of teams that have some or all members working flexibly; understand that working remotely, for example, doesn’t suit all employee; and increase resources to build employee resilience.

The Flex for Success report highlights one of the biggest shifts stemming from the changing attitudes of the most senior ranks of leadership teams towards flexibility. Download report

TAGS

RECOMMENDED
ARTICLES

Media release: Former CEW president Sam Mostyn to become Australia’s next governor-general Chief Executive Women (CEW) congratulates former CEW president Sam Mostyn AO on the announcement she will become Australia’s next governor-general. CEW president Susan Lloyd-Hurwitz says Sam is a visionary leader who transformed CEW’s advocacy agenda at a critical time for Australian women. “As...
Media release: CEW Welcomes ‘Working For Women’, A National Strategy To Achieve Gender Equality Chief Executive Women (CEW) has welcomed the National Strategy to Achieve Gender Equality.  Released today by the federal Minister for Women, Katy Gallagher, the strategy outlines priority areas for improvements in women’s affairs, including a commitment to paying superannuation on Commonwealth Paid...
Media release: CEW celebrates new era of gendered data transparency, calls on all employers to set gender equality targets Chief Executive Women (CEW) has welcomed the publication of gender pay gaps for every individual Australian employer with 100 or more employees, calling for all Australian businesses to set gender equality targets to increase women’s representation...
CEW calls on the Federal Government to unlock the economy by addressing women’s workforce participation CEW is calling on the Federal Government to address the country’s economic challenges with a suite of policy settings that will help unlock women’s workforce participation for the good of all. In its 2024-25 Pre Budget Submission, which has been...
CEW welcomes the findings of the Workplace Gender Equality Agency’s (WGEA) Scorecard, which has found that the average total remuneration gender pay gap has dropped to 21.7 per cent in 2023 from 22.8 per cent in 2022.  It is the second biggest single year drop since WGEA started collecting employer data in 2014, however, on...
CEW welcomes and supports the Productivity Commission’s Report into Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) and takes this opportunity to welcome the new Productivity Commission Chair and CEW member Danielle Wood to this important role. CEW supports the key recommendations of the report, namely: Building towards universal, free or low-cost access for all children to...
Today we released our seventh annual Chief Executive Women Senior Executive Census which tracks the annual progress of women’s representation in the senior leadership teams of Australia’s top companies. Latest data shows that women remain undeniably underrepresented in leadership teams across Australia’s top businesses and gender parity at the top is still at least half...
CEW welcomes significant Federal Budget to enable women’s economic participation and support the most vulnerable women across the economy Chief Executive Women (CEW) welcomes the Federal Budget and Women’s Budget Statement as an impactful Budget for women, with crucial measures to enable women’s participation in the economy, while supporting vulnerable women who are most impacted...
Chief Executive Women (CEW) welcomes the passing of the Workplace Gender Equality Amendment (Closing the Gender Pay Gap) Bill 2023, a vital step forward to enable women and to advance gender equality in Australian workplaces.   CEW Policy and Engagement Committee Chair Pauline Vamos said: “CEW welcomes this important reform, which will improve transparency and...
Diversity Council Australia (DCA), along with partners Settlement Services International (SSI) and Chief Executive Women (CEW) have today launched an exciting new and groundbreaking project to build pathways to leadership for women from culturally and racially marginalised (CARM) and culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds. The project, Realise. Inspire. Support. Energise. (RISE) will work to address the...