Public Sector Unearthed – EP#8: Unpacking the ACT flexible work program with Matt Padovan and Noel Chan

In this episode of the Public Sector Unearthed podcast, Matt Padovan and Noel Chan from the ACT public service walk us through the organisation’s innovative flexible work program.

Having worked on this project well before the world had to grapple with more flexible work demands due to COVID-19, Matt, who is director of flexible work within the ACT Government’s Office of Industrial Relations and Workforce Strategy, reflects on the program’s development. He highlights that it is as much about innovative workspaces as it is about cultural uplift, and why this approach wasn’t without challenges in the initial stages.  

Noel, who is director of the North Canberra Hospital Transition Project at the ACT Health Directorate is an avid user of the flexi hub workspaces, with the Belconnen site being her personal favourite. She talks about how the flexible workspaces have improved her work-life balance, and how it’s helped her gain a fresh perspective on the importance of collaboration between different directorates.

Together with guest presenter Brock Phyland, Matt and Noel explore how flexible workspaces have transitioned from simply providing location flexibility to driving a cultural shift that promotes collaboration and innovation across various government areas.

This episode’s Unearthed wisdom: Experimentation and taking risks are key to creating flexible workspaces that are responsive to workforce needs.


Matt Padovan

Matt is a director of flexible arrangements within the ACT Government’s Office of Industrial Relations and Workforce Strategy.  Since 2016, he has delivered programs to advance the ACT Public Service’s aim to be the most progressive jurisdiction with regards to flexible working.

Noel Chan

Noel is the director, North Canberra Hospital Transition Project within the ACT Health Directorate. Previously, Noel has worked in various roles within the ACT Government, university sector, and non-governmental organisations in the areas of ICT portfolio governance, cyber security, sustainability, environmental management, capital works and infrastructure, corporate management data and reporting.