IAG launches flexible working app


Australian insurance giant IAG has announced the release of a new in-house app allowing contact centre staff to allocate and adjust work hours and rosters, with early results showing a noticeable reduction in sick leave and an increase in employee engagement.

Dubbed ‘Switch’, the app, developed over 18 months, has been rolled out across IAG brand portfolio, including NRMA and CGU insurance.

Among the first of its kind within the financial services industry, the new app uses a pricing algorithm and digital marketplace to manage the supply and demand for contact centre staff rosters.

To avoid blackspots in rostering, the app incentivises staff to take on unfilled shifts by granting them ‘Flexicoins’, which can be cashed in for subsequent shift changes.

If an employee earns enough Flexicoins in their digital wallet, their shift change requests will be automatically and instantly approved by the app.

The app effectively allows staff to bypass managers for shift changes and work hour adjustments approvals.

Results from early trials of Switch have shown a significant reduction in sick leave and an increase in employee engagement and mental wellbeing following the trial, according to the IAG.

According to IAG Executive General Manager Amanda Whiting, Switch has effectively automated the rostering process, giving staff the freedom to “change shifts on their own terms” without the need to justify their requests to their managers. 

“We recognise that flexibility is different for everyone, which is how Switch really starts to add value,” she said.

“The process of changing shifts has previously been quite manual and often involved several conversations between the employee, their manager and colleagues. Not only is this time-consuming for the individual, but labour intensive for the business,” Whiting said.

“We believe that offering a flexible workplace is important for attracting and retaining the best talent. This also translates into our customer experience as good customer service is often a reflection of a good employee experience.”