The COVID-19 crisis necessitated a rapid change in working arrangements, and across the Australian workforce, employers were able to facilitate their employees working from home on a previously unimagined scale.
Working During the Pandemic
In 2020, the CPSU collaborated with researchers from CQUniversity and UNSW Canberra to undertake a research project, Working During the Pandemic, to gather data about the experience of public sector employees working during the COVID-19 crisis. More than 6000 employees from across the APS, NTPS and ACT Government participated in the project - 95% of responses were from the federal public sector.
The survey showed that only 31% of respondents had accessed the option to work from home prior to the pandemic. For lower level APS employees, fewer than 15% of respondents had accessed working from home pre-pandemic. At the time of the survey, the officially reported figure had 57% of APS staff working from home - that rose to 64%, as reported on 11 August 2020. This dramatic shift to home-based work enabled the APS to continue to operate effectively and meet the challenges of the pandemic for the Australian community. The effectiveness of this transformation provides an opportunity to consider future directions and increased access to work from home arrangements
- Take a quick look at the survey highlights.
- Read the CPSU analysis of the survey results.
- Download the research report - Working during the Pandemic: From resistance to revolution?
The future of working from home
The results from the survey confirm what CPSU members have been saying - employees should have continued access to working from home, and there are real benefits for employees and for agencies.
If the benefits of changes from the last year are not going to be lost, agencies need to move to agree to better and ongoing work from home policies and practices.
Members and delegates are looking for agreed policies that really provide the right culture, mechanisms and practices to support employees and supervisors to facilitate WFH arrangements.
How does your agency stack up?
The CPSU has been campaigning across the APS to improve working from home policies and to ensure that working from home continues to be available where employees want it.
Find out how your agency’s policy currently stacks up. Together, we will continue to push for improvements and greater flexibility for employees.
Agency scorecards – provide a detailed analysis of your agency’s current working from home policy. Click on your agency name in the table below to see your agency’s scorecard.
Comparison with other agencies – compare your agency’s policy with other agencies.
Your agency not listed? Please contact your CPSU organiser.
|ATO (pilot interim policy)||Health|