Flexible working arrangements for mature-aged workers

Flexible working arrangements can be important for mature-aged workers as they move towards retirement. Allowing them to work flexibly may lead to increased participation and productivity.

Complying with your industrial award

Make sure any flexible working arrangements meet the requirements of the relevant award or agreement that covers your business.

Read more about flexible working arrangements on the Fair Work Ombudsman website.

Employer benefits

The benefits of allowing flexible working arrangements for mature-aged workers include:

  • retention of corporate knowledge and skills - preventing shortages in critical areas
  • less recruitment and training costs.

Phased retirement options

Phased retirement allows employees who are eligible to retire, or close to retirement but unable to continue working full-time, to make an easier transition. Options include gradual retirement and deferred retirement.

Gradual retirement or pre-retirement

Gradual retirement involves employees progressively reducing their working time and/or workload over a period of time. This may include:

  • part-time employment
  • job sharing
  • pay averaging for purchasing additional annual leave
  • partial long service leave over a long period of time.

Partial long service leave

Eligibility for partial long service leave over a long period of time depends on the relevant award. If there is no provision in the award, or the employee is not covered by an award, section 45(2) of the Industrial Relations Act 2016 allows employees and employers to negotiate an arrangement.

Deferred retirement or post-retirement

Deferred retirement involves extending employment after the normal retirement age, usually subject to employer approval and/or proof of fitness.

This may include:

  • allowing employees to continue working after retirement on a part-time basis
  • job sharing and pay averaging schemes for purchasing additional annual leave
  • casual or contract work after retirement.

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