Today, U.S. Rep. Mimi Walters (R-Calif.) introduced the Workflex in the 21st Century Act (H.R. 4219). This bill was developed in partnership with SHRM and with the input of many HR professionals who will design workplace flexibility and paid leave guidelines for today’s workforce, as well as expand their access to all employees in the U.S.
SHRM is committed to supporting the modern workplace, where employers, employees and their families need more varied work options and paid leave to meet their unique needs. We call this workplace flexibility, or “Workflex” for short. Under the Act, all employees—including those working part time—can access paid leave and a workplace flexibility option not currently guaranteed under existing federal law. Employers that do not choose to offer these basic plans would remain under the varied state and local paid leave laws.
Workflex is the kind of modern workforce policy that enables American businesses to compete for top talent and for their employees to navigate the responsibilities of caregiving and other personal obligations and pursuits as they choose. Rather than wielding a one-size-fits-all government mandate or navigating the myriad of state and local mandates, this legislation is a completely voluntary, opt-in program, and it does not create costs for taxpayers.
As a legislative solution, it does three things: supports employees in meeting their work-life needs; provides paid leave to employees; and provides certainty, and stability to employers operating in multiple jurisdictions. Importantly, Workflex works effectively in diverse labor environments, industries and organization sizes. Learn more about the bill on SHRM.org.
The 21st-century workplace demands and depends on policies that are innovative, fair and competitive, so SHRM is constantly exploring creative ways people can work most effectively while meeting their work and family needs. This legislation is just one component of SHRM’s ongoing mission to develop solutions that support both employers and employees to work and be their best.
The modern workplace is transforming; so too should the rules that govern it. From new parents to non-parents, and from Millennials to Baby Boomers, this bill helps all employees achieve a better work-life fit and enables employers to ensure predictability and fairness across their workplaces. Everyone wins.