Spend some time in the school yard before assembly and it will become apparent that a considerable number of young mum’s of school age children are looking to re-enter the workforce. Financial demands are playing a key factor in their decision, but their preference is not for 9-5 work, but rather 9-3…school hours.
Finding a job that offers school hours is not easy, but when such a job role comes available, it is in high demand. The high cost of childcare also adds to the need to work part-time weekday hours. Otherwise you are simply working to pay for the childcare itself. As women from all working backgrounds take a break from work to start a family, it stands to reason that there is a large pool of talent from all levels of industry looking for an opportunity to re-join the workforce. This talent, while limited in its availability, is still a valuable resource of personnel. So my question to you is, should we be looking to create more jobs for these mum’s (and a growing number of stay-at-home dad’s) rather than allowing their education, skills, specialist knowledge and qualifications to go to waste?
For a long time now there has been a distinct lack of opportunities for women wanting to balance motherhood with a career. Many employers have introduced job sharing and working from home opportunities, however the demand for 9-3 jobs still outstrips supply. No doubt this is a contributing factor in the increase of independent contractors and self-employment.
Family-friendly employment opportunities need to increase as working parents can and do make a valuable and significant contribution to the workplace. Promoting flexible work practises also makes you a more attractive employer in the wider scope of the employment market. So if your recruitment policies are failing to include, attract and retain this largely underutilised segment, you need to expand your recruitment practices. Connecting with this talented group that wants and believes they can have it all is to connect with a motivated workforce that will be productive, innovative and profitable.
Society has evolved a lot since the 1950’s when wives and mothers stayed at home and raised a family. Today it is normal not only for women to work, but to head back into the workforce after having children. Such is the demand from women to continue their careers after starting a family that they are finding creative ways to balance family and work. If they see you as a like-minded employer committed to providing employees with a happy work-life balance, you will open yourself up to connecting with a much broader, and talented, pool of candidates.