At Stockland, we work on the premise that people are motivated and productive when they feel trusted, and our approach to flexible working helps build this trust.
Each employee is encouraged to come up with ‘One Simple Thing’, which is an arrangement that helps employees manage their work-life quality. Examples of employees’ ‘One Simple Thing’ include: taking time off to get to the gym at least twice per week during lunchtime, leaving early to attend to family commitments, or amending working hours to be able to accommodate university studies.
Nearly 80 per cent of staff have recorded their One Simple Thing, reflecting how flexibility is a mainstream component of working at Stockland rather than something just for certain employees.
“All roles at Stockland can be flexible, and this initiative is aimed at ensuring there is no stigma associated with flexible work arrangements. As a company we are focused on outcomes, not hours at the desk” said Mark Steinert, Stockland Managing Director and CEO.
Flexibility also has implications for workplace diversity, including when employees welcome new children into their families. We recently redesigned our parental leave policies to provide greater flexibility and resources for families to care for their new child, and to support them when they do return to work.
Updates to our parental leave policies in May 2017 included the option to allow primary carer’s leave within 18 months of birth or adoption to encourage more secondary carers to subsequently become primary carers and access leave benefits. Pleasingly, over 90 per cent of our employees on parental leave return to work.
Gennaro Folino, Retail Design Manager in our Melbourne office, took primary carer’s leave to look after his son, Julian, after his wife decided to return to work. Not wanting to miss out on time with Julian, Gennaro was able to become Julian’s primary carer courtesy of our parental leave policies. “When I brought it up at Stockland, my colleagues were incredibly supportive. There are lots of good stories on our intranet about men taking parental leave, so it’s not just talk about flexibility – people are actually doing it” said Gennaro.
Davina Rooney, General Manager Sustainability, made use of flexibility at Stockland to advance her career while welcoming two children of her own. Two of her promotions occurred while she was either pregnant or on parental leave, and she has utilised the on-site childcare facilities to support her parenting requirements after returning to work. “I’ve been working part-time for the last five years and I don’t work in the office on Fridays. This means that while I have a busy work role, I can still be involved with my children” said Davina.
Our approach to flexible working has been a key component of our recognition as an Employer of Choice for Gender Equality by the Workplace Gender Equality Association (WGEA) for three consecutive years.