Aussies green light flexible working – but only if it doesn’t hinder their career
AN overwhelming 94 per cent of Australians would prefer to work flexibly if it didn’t disadvantage their career.
In a website pollby recruiting experts Hays, just three per cent of 3248 skilled professionals surveyed said flexible working isn’t on their list of priorities.
The final three per cent said they would not work flexibly because the financial implications would be too great.
"There is great concern amongst Australia’s working population that taking up flexibly will be a handicap on their career,” says Nick Deligiannis, managing director of Hays in Australia and New Zealand.
“From slower promotional pathways to less access to learning and development, a low profile within the organisation and even a loss of status, there is a feeling that the career of employees who work flexibly can suffer,” he said.
A separate survey of 842 Australians shows the potential impact of working flexibly on a career is seen to be greater for women than men; 65 per cent said it is a career-limiting move for women, higher than the 51 per cent who said it is for men.
“Flexible working shouldn’t come with any career limitations,” says Nick. “Often these are the result of an employer or line manager making assumptions about the career motivations of the employee concerned.
“But each person is unique, with her or his own motivations and career goals.
“We should take the time to understand what those are so that any unconscious bias doesn’t have career consequences for anyone working flexibly.
“Of course, there are many jobs that require people to be based in the office or on a work site, but for those that aren’t restricted to a particular location, flexible working arrangements without career consequences can have a huge impact on staff retention.”