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A New Way of Working: Flexibility and Work-Life Balance in the Accounting Profession in Australia

A New Way of Working: Flexibility and Work-Life Balance in the Accounting Profession in Australia
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Author(s): Karen Handley (Macquarie University, Australia), Susan McGrath-Champ (University of Sydney, Australia) and Philomena Leung (Macquarie University, Australia)
Copyright: 2017
Pages: 24
Source title: Remote Work and Collaboration: Breakthroughs in Research and Practice
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Information Resources Management Association (USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-1918-8.ch014

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Abstract

This chapter provides evidence of the practical implementation of an aspect of ‘new ways of working', that is, flexible work arrangements (FWA) in the Australian accounting profession. It reports and analyses the results of interviews of twenty accounting professionals conducted in 2014. FWA refers to the interrelationship between temporal and spatial flexibility which are facilitated by technology. In this chapter, evidence is provided of the public rhetoric regarding FWA by accounting firms, particularly the Big Four firms. This is contrasted with anecdotal testimony from the interviews to reveal the success with which these goals have been adopted and implemented across the accounting profession, and the impact they have on work-life balance (WLB). The findings reveal inconsistencies and prejudices still in place in Australian accounting firms and suggest that, although there has been some success in this area, some conservative views still need challenging.

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