What you need to know about the changes to employment law:
In January 2010, the Federal Government introduced the National Employment Standards. Two out of the 10 Standards are of direct interest to working parents.
- Parental leave: Employees will have the ability to request a second 12 months of unpaid leave, so 24 months in total. Currently it is only 12 months.
- Right to request flexibility: An employee who is a parent of or has responsibility for a child under school age can request flexible working hours. An employer may refuse on 'reasonable business grounds'. The request and refusal must be in writing and provide reasons.
For more information, visit www.fairwork.gov.au
It is important to recognise employers who adjust their workplace policies to reflect a work and family balance.
Family friendly employers include organisations that offer its employees (both men and women) working arrangements and support services providing more flexibility and work life balance for their employees.
Read our tips for dealing with recruiters
Read our game plan on how to find a flexible job.
Find out how to negotiate flexiiblity.
Read the list of family friendly characteristics & compare your employer:
- Flexible working hours that include negotiable start and finish times, days of work
- Part time and job sharing opportunities
- Provide paid parental leave
- Offer a childcare subsidy; on site care facility or vacation care
- Allow employees to work core or shift hours to suit their family situation
- Offer work-from-home arrangements
- Provide return-to-work support and training for employees eg: allow ‘phased–in’ approach to return to work
- Provide career mentoring and coaching to retain valuable employees
- Provide employees with more annual leave than the average 4 weeks and additional carer’s leave
- Actively promote work life balance through company policies eg: restricted meetings no start before 9am or after 4pm
- Provide employees with period of unpaid ‘sabbatical’ leave
- Allow parents can bring children to work in emergencies or subsidise the cost of an emergency carer
- Offer shorter, compressed working week
- Offer access to an employee assistance program
- Provide on-site or subsidise health and recreational activities for employees
- Allow employees to extend their parental leave