Flexible work improves business bottom line

Flexible work is not only good for employees but it also makes sound financial sense, according to new research from the Victorian Government.

The Victorian Government wanted to build on the already well-established business case, commissioning Nous Group to calculate the financial return organisations receive when they invest in flexible work.

By examining the costs of flexible work in three organisations, the report found that it produced significant savings:

  • Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning saved $31 million annually
  • Mercy Health saved $23 million annually
  • Wannon Water saved $150,000 annually

Victoria’s Minister for Women Natalie Hutchins said the “report proves that flexible workplaces are not only the right choice but the smart choice.”

Flexibility has become an increasingly important consideration for organisations, as benefits include:

  • Improved output
  • More effective and productive employees
  • Better ability to serve clients and stakeholders
  • Lower staff turnover
  • Improved talent attraction
  • Higher organisational morale

Our data on flexibility shows that seven in ten employers now have a flexible working policy or strategy but less than one in 20 has set targets for employee engagement in flexible work.

Normalising flexible working arrangements for women and men is one of the key actions to closing the gender pay gap and increasing the representation of women in leadership positions.

Research shows that women spend substantially more time on unpaid care work than men and this unequal distribution reinforces gender inequalities in the Australian workforce. Unfortunately, men are also twice as likely as women to have their request to work flexibly rejected.

To get organisations started on their own flexible work journey, see our guides on developing a workplace flexibility strategy and building a flexibility business case.

For more details on the benefits, see our briefing note on workplace flexibility.

The Victorian Government report also includes a handy modelling tool for other organisations to use to calculate their potential savings.