In 2017, the BHP Perth office established a creche and two family-friendly workspaces, with the intention of providing emergency and adhoc care to parents when their regular childcare arrangements fell through.
This year, that service has been expanded to Newman, with the provision of a flexible work centre that includes four hot desks, two family-friendly rooms and a meeting room accommodating five people. BHP has also supported the Newman Neighbourhood Centre Creche next door to go from a two mornings per week offering to a full-time service.
The Perth facility has now been used by more than 400 families, who had made more than 2700 bookings by the end of October 2020. More than 40 per cent of the bookings were male, signifying increased shared caring responsibilities that enable women to return to work. In Newman, the service was used by 80 families making more than 300 bookings within the first four months of opening and numbers continue to rise. Some 60 per cent of bookings were community-related, demonstrating the far-reaching social value of the initiative.
Feedback and testimonials show the initiative is helping BHP retain talented women and increase employee engagement, with significant take-up during school holidays when parents and children get a kick out of going to work together.