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Family Friendly Testimonials

Tara Pukala, Associate Professor, Chemistry

I commenced my academic role at the University in Nov 2008 and in Dec 2012 I started maternity leave. Upon returning to work I accessed voluntary flexible work arrangements (at 0.6 or 0.8 FTE over two and a half years). The voluntary flexible arrangements enabled me to return to work following maternity leave so that I could best continue to progress my academic career while still enjoying motherhood. A reduced workload fraction also gave me the capacity to manage the demands of a young child, and allowed me to spend additional time with my daughter in her precious early years. In addition, having flexibility in working hours meant I could juggle the demands of teaching, research, childcare and other commitments. Despite being part time, the flexibility helped me to remain productive in my role, and I was even promoted during this period!

Deb Coulls, Manager, HSW Policy and Injury Management, Human Resources

I have been at the University for 12 years. I access a Voluntary Flexible Work Arrangement (VFWA) - Compressed weeks. My 36.75 hours per week are divided over 4 days. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday with Wednesdays off. The main reason for initially requesting a VFWA in 2016 was to look after my 2.5 year old grand-daughter and to also provide some options to assist my aging mother. I now have 4 grand-children and my VFWA allows me to assist with their care. I love my job and didn’t want to decrease my hours, so this have given me the opportunity to do both. The one thing I didn’t expect was the positive impact it has had on me. Spending Wednesday off work gives me the opportunity to re-charge my batteries. I’m also more active as I’m not sitting at my computer all day. So there are many benefits from a wellbeing perspective. I have been able to manage my diary and work commitments over 4 days and have been very well supported by my Manager and my team.

Stuart Matthews, School Manager, School of Agriculture, Food and Wine

I have worked at the University for just over 20 Years. As parents of a 12 year old disabled child who attends a Special Needs School, my wife and I have always needed to juggle our start and finishing times. When my wife was employed on a casual basis she was the one who inevitably did the school drop offs and pick-ups, but now she works part time which requires her to work three full days a week. With the support of my supervisor, I altered my work pattern so I start at 7am every day and leave early on the days she is working to pick up our boy from School which means we don’t have to use Carers at those times.

Jessica Douglas, Corporate Marketing Co-ordinator , Marketing and Communications

currently on maternity leave

I joined the University in 2012 and worked full-time until I took maternity leave to have my first son in 2014. Upon my return to work, I applied for a flexible work arrangement to enable me to continue to care for and spend time with my son, while continuing my role at the University. Initially I returned at 0.6 capacity, but once things settled down and I became more comfortable combining motherhood and career, I increased to 0.8 capacity. My flexible work arrangement allows me to balance my work and home life. My manager and team are highly supportive of my arrangement and we work together to ensure that my working part-time doesn’t impact the rest of the team. I appreciate the support from the wider branch and university. It’s one aspect that makes the University of Adelaide a great place to work.


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Sandstone building at the University of Adelaide's North Terrace Campus