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Innovative, flexible work policies praised

Innovative, flexible work policies praised

Maddocks has been recognised as a fair and flexible employer by the Victorian state government.

Maddocks has been recognised as a fair and flexible employer by the Victorian state government. 

Minister for Industrial Relations, Martin Pakula, presented Maddocks CEO David Rennick with the award “in recognition of innovative programs and practices that improve the work and family balance of employees”.

Maddocks director of people and culture, Liz Ryan, said the award was great recognition of the way the firm operates.

“About 70 out of 400 people across the firm are working in some sort of flexible arrangement,” she said.

Those arrangements could take many different forms.

“We have had people working quite remotely from Maddocks. We had one person still working for us while they were in France and also had somebody working from The Kimberley while they were located there for a time,” Ryan said.

“We also have a person in the Sydney office that needs to work five days a week but can’t work on Wednesdays, so they work Saturday instead.”

Ryan said the individual arrangements depend on whether the type of work being done is suited to alternative practices.

“With any flexibility arrangement you have to look into what the need of the employee is, whether it will fit the business needs and whether or not it fits the type of work that employee is undertaking.

“You also have to manage client expectations. But we would always try to make sure that if people request to work in a flexible capacity that we do everything we can to support that.”

Ryan said the firm had embraced flexible work arrangements for a long time, but the look of those individual situations had changed over the years.

“If you look back 10 years, it was much more about the part-time scenario, where as in the last four to five years, there’s been a lot more diversity.

“We have people doing job share arrangements, some people work from home, there is a whole myriad of things we can look at, but they have to be in line with the needs of both the business and the individual.”

The implementation of flexible work policies was good for the firm as a whole, and boosted the morale of all employees, not just those working in flexible situations.

“For those employees working full time it provides them with some comfort that if their circumstances change, they are working for an organisation that is quite open and accommodating to alternative arrangements,” Ryan said.

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