Our people are key to everything we are at PEXA.
We realised that there was lots of scope to improve upon existing Australian family support policies, particularly for millennial parents and their families. That’s why we committed to setting the bar for workplaces nationally, by introducing a fluid, game-changing diversity and inclusion portfolio, in support of our existing health and wellbeing programs.
Our policies are a direct investment in our people – and subsequently, our culture, the success of our business and our mission to transform property experiences for everyone.
At PEXA, we have a unique workforce, with a lot of people who are starting or are in the middle of building their families. To support our people at these stages of their lives we have implemented industry leading parental support programs and incentives, as well as health and wellbeing initiatives.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, and considering the various lockdowns nationally, it was important to support parents of school-going children. Partnering with KidsCo Australia, we offered educational and inspiring holiday programs for kids aged between 5-12 years of age. The mix of virtual, teacher led interactions and self-guided activities, helped support PEXA parents in their time of need.
As well as these policies, we continue to celebrate employees’ personal milestones – newborns, engagements, marriages and birthdays. While it was difficult to come together to celebrate birthdays monthly during COVID-19, we continue to earmark other milestones with gifts for new parents and shoutouts/sharing photos across the company (with new parent permissions of course!).
We also developed the PEXA Wellness Hub in 2020 for our customers and the broader community to utilise for free when needed.
From the start, we understood that we needed to meet the needs of our employees for them to deliver the best outcomes for our customers. We also understood this was a critical part of our employee value proposition to help us attract and retain the right talent.
Our employees’ input was critical to the success of the implementation of our program of work. We underwent an internal assessment to identify how many would take up the proposed benefits and sought feedback on how valuable they would find the benefits offered.
The reception was incredibly positive, and we commenced work on the program creation and launch.
Once we worked out the details of the program and associated policies, we sought endorsement from the Executive leadership team and submitted it for Board approval.
Upon approval, we launched the program at an internal Family and Friends day event in 2019. Including our employees’ families at the announcement of the benefits was important because they were the reasons why the program was developed.
New employees are briefed on policies and benefits as part of their induction program.
Since formally launching our program of work in August 2019, we are delighted to share that 14 employees have taken primary carer parental leave, 18 have taken secondary carer leave and 50 employees have accessed the childcare assistance allowance.
Our holiday program continues to be a roaring success among parents and their kids. Here is some of the amazing feedback we’ve received about the online KidsCo program:
‘It is really great, especially during lockdown, to have these engaging activities that give them a break from screen time. Appreciate PEXA providing this for no cost, with a donation to Alannah & Madeline foundation – so win, win.’
‘My daughter attended two KidsCo days and she absolutely loved it. It really helped me out too because I could get some solid work done in between morning tea/lunch breaks etc but still spend time with (name) in between.’
PEXA’s focus on work/life blend was also positively reflected in our recent all-company survey held in October 2021. For example, 96% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that they felt genuinely supported if they choose to make use of flexible working arrangements and 93% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that they can arrange time out from work when needed. Wellbeing also rated as our highest factor and 95% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that employee wellbeing is a priority at PEXA; 15 percentage points above the global survey benchmark!
Our wellness activities have proved popular, pivoting online throughout the pandemic. Employees have had the opportunity to hear from wellbeing experts on the importance of boundaries, sleep, resilience and reducing screen time. 80% of our employees have accessed at least one wellness day to rest and recharge in 2021.
PEXA also provides quarterly family friendly connect events. These are virtual activity offerings, such as trivia nights, for the whole family to join in.
We’ve also recently been named top 3 in Wrk+’s Best Places to Work 2021, for companies with more than 100 employees. This highlights the engagement and pride of our employees in what PEXA does and offers.
Hannah M, Senior Marketing Manager
Hannah was the first PEXA parent to use our parental leave policy. Her daughter Sophia was born in August 2019, but Hannah first felt the importance of employer support when she was planning her pregnancy.
“When I talk to my friends, they’re often waiting on a promotion, a contract to start or a project to finish before they start a family. I didn’t have to take any of this into consideration, I’ve always felt supported to start a family when it suits me.
“When applying for jobs more than five years ago, I didn’t value the importance of parental leave policies, but I do now.”
Returning to the (virtual) office after enjoying her parental leave, the flexibility offered in the policies meant that she could focus on her return to work.
“I loved that time with my daughter Sophia. The parental leave policies, particularly the flexi leave, allowed for a smooth transition back to work.”
Hannah was also the first PEXA employee to receive continued super contributions on unpaid maternity leave under the new scheme.
“Being financially independent is really important to me and this policy meant that the unpaid leave I took was minimal and didn’t have a significant effect on my income or my superannuation.
“It’s great not to have to factor in ‘lost’ super when planning my return to work.”
Now expecting her second child, Hannah is able to focus on what lies ahead – her growing family.