Better Work and Family Balance
More flexible hours mean more time
to enjoy a Mansfield lifestyle
Mansfield Shire Council recognised it needed to do more to retain and attract staff.
With the help of staff, management realised flexible working arrangements could
meet everyone’s needs.
After working for some 20 years, Finance Officer Robyn Baddeley,
finally has a nine day fortnight – and she loves it. “For a worker with
a family, it allows me some time to myself. I might choose to spend the
day doing housework, but I can also choose to read a book, which is an
absolute luxury I’ve never had with an employer before”.
Robyn joined the Mansfield Shire Council last year and, soon after,
her team became among of the first to embrace the Shire’s move
to expand its flexible working arrangements.
For Robyn, a nine day fortnight is “a day to look forward to each
fortnight” while for the Shire Council, it is a way to attract and
Kaylene Conrick, Director of Community and Corporate Services,
was the leader of the Steering Committee that guided the Shire’s
110 staff through its Work Supporting Lifestyle Employment
The project, funded by a Victorian Government Better Work
and Family Balance grant, was carried out between January
and December 2004.
Under the Better Work and Family Balance grants program,
Victorian businesses and local government organisations with
less than 200 employees could apply for grants of up to $50,000
to investigate initiatives to assist employees to better balance
work and family, while ensuring no adverse impact on the
The Shire recognised that it was having trouble attracting and
retaining professional staff, particularly when competing with other
bigger, city-based councils.
“We knew our area was attractive to people wanting a lifestyle change,
but we needed a further angle because we couldn’t offer the same
salaries as other councils. We decided we needed to look into the
flexible arrangements we could offer that wo