Industrial Relations |
Flexible Working Day 2017

Australians still too flexible with flexibility

  • Download full report from first-ever ‘Flexible Work. What’s Working and What’s Not?’ Survey  
  • Get involved in ‘Flexible Working Day’ being held across Australia today Wednesday 21 June 2017
  • Visit for toolkits and resources for employees and employers
Results of a national survey into flexible working practices, released on ‘Flexible Working Day’ on Wednesday 21 June 2017, reveal that Australian workplaces and employees are still relatively inflexible with flexible working arrangements, which may be contributing to ‘flexism’ and preventing businesses from realising their full potential.

While more than 80 percent of respondents embraced some form of flexibility in their jobs, less than 40 per cent had formal flexible work practices in place, leaving room for employers and employees to miss out on the benefits of true flexible working and creating an environment for ‘flexism’ to thrive.

The report, prepared by Career Inside Track, aims to support a conversation among Australian employees and employers from private, government and non-profit sectors as part of the first-ever national Flexible Working Day, with participants taking the opportunity to assess their FlexWork maturity level, discuss the benefits of flexible work practices and share their own stories of flexibility.

According to Career Inside Track’s Vanessa Vanderhoek, the businesswoman facilitating the national conversation during Flexible Working Day, the report shows the potential for flexible working in Australia and the opportunities that employees and employers can gain from this way of working that is not going away.

“The change is real. The demand for more modern approaches to workforce flexibility is here with 4 in 10 people saying they will leave a job if they’re not offered the flexibility they need. This is a big cost to business and one they cannot afford to ignore,” Ms Vanderhoek said.

“The findings from the survey have been distilled into this report, to drive a social change initiative about the win-win benefits of modern approaches to flexible working for both business and employees. This discussion begins today, 21 June 2017, on Australia’s first ever national Flexible Working Day.”

Ambassadors for Flexible Working Day, including journalists Tracey Spicer and Angela Priestley, sporting champions Kim Brennan and Tom Faulkner, and chief executives and senior leaders from Diversity Council of Australia, GM Holden, Medibank, FlexCareers and other leading companies, are showing their support through events within their own organisations, sharing personal stories and photos on social media, and speaking with colleagues about how to make flexible working arrangements work for them.

Other activities will include employee briefing sessions run by partner organisations, and free advice from flexible working experts such as Vanessa Vanderhoek and the FlexCoaches at FlexCareers. “We invite everyone to make a pledge about how they can better embrace themselves or support others working flexibly – please download the pledge card on the website and share on social media,” said Ms Vanderhoek.

Other interesting findings from the survey included that 75 per cent of people believe flexible working is not just for mothers; work flexibility is the most important influence on career choices at 66 per cent, followed by passion, work environment, remuneration and career progression; and 25 per cent of people have had a request for flexible working rejected.

Flexible Working Day is proudly supported by FlexCareers, The Parenthood and Women’s Agenda.
For more information, visit or join the conversation with #FWDay2017 #FlexWorkFullLife #TackleFlexism

The full report can be downloaded at


Vanessa Vanderhoek is available for interview. A range of case studies are also available.
Media contact: Jack Walden, or 0428 300 090