Category Archives: Flexible working

More generous help for child care from Coalition

Posted on March 18, 2014 by allmumkind | Comments (3)

As part of the joint appeal by the Coalition to support child care for working families, they will be given up to £2000 per child under the 2014 budget.

This has come as a surprise as it is more generous than expected with plans for the new scheme to start in autumn 2015.

The move by the Coalition comes as pressure is mounting with more middle class workers being dragged into the 40p tax band.

Originally the support for families was based on the equivalent of basic rate tax on up to £6000 spent on childcare. This would equate to around £1,200. Now they have moved the expenditure to £10,000 on childcare which represents a payment worth £2000 for each child.

Although the Coalition are promoting this scheme more generously, one thing they have made clear is that this will only benefit two earner families and this is estimated to support 1.9 million families.

Posted in Flexible working

More business want to hire mums

Posted on March 11, 2014 by allmumkind | Comments (2)

A new poll carried out by Regus has found that two fifths of employers plan to recruit more mums over the next few years.

The survey was carried out over 2000 businesses including senior managers and it was found that 8 out of 10 UK organisations feel that businesses are missing out by not employing the vast skills and experience of women returning to the workplace.

A similar poll was produce a few year ago and since then, the appetite for hiring women with children has increased by over 25% since then.

Businesses feel that hiring women with children locally works really well for their business than them working actually from home. In some regions it pays off for businesses to source quality skilled candidates who are directly on their doorstep whereby they can hire flexibly without commuting issues.

Posted in Flexible working

Flexible working will be commonplace by 2030

Posted on March 4, 2014 by allmumkind | Comments (1)

A recent report set out by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES) has suggested that flexible work forces will be commonplace by 2030.

As our population is living longer and with the changing economic times, there will be more older workers, aged 70 and above who will still be contributing, albeit in a flexible pattern. More working mums will increase with the shift in society and financial pressures which will mean more parents having to work.

Technology is beginning to and will have a defined impact on workers physically being present in an office to complete their roles. Offices could represent more of a "virtual workplace".

These are just some of the forecasted changes which will have profound implications for employers and especially HR functions and how they will work by 2030. The significant rise in flexible working will be a demand from our evolving multigenerational workforce.

Posted in Flexible working

Better childcare to support career prospects

Posted on November 26, 2013 by allmumkind | Comments (0)

A recent survey carried out by Mumsnet found that having children made it more difficult to have a career and two in three felt "less employable" after they had children.

Many of the women felt their jobs became vulnerable as soon as they announced their pregnancy and it lead to lack of career progression. More and more women felt that employers lacked support when they had a family.

Pressure can build once the mothers returned to work when lack of support and understanding is given especially when set time dictate they leave to collect their children from childcare.

It has been suggested that women should stay at home and care for their families, however during this economic climate, staying at home is becoming less of an option for many families.

There has been a shift in the amount of women returning to work and their are estimated 2 million working mums who are now in fact the main bread winners. This is now 80% higher than 15 years ago. They earn more than their partner and can succeed at doing this will quality childcare and support from employers to allow for a degree of flexibility. Women can become more competitive in the workplace with better childcare facilities and better organised plans for women to transition back to the workplace.

Socially, we’ve got to stop criticising each other’s hard choices – there’s more than one way to raise a child well.
One of the most practical things the Government can do to improve the working mother’s lot, and that of society as a whole, is to invest intelligently in early childcare by creating world-class nurseries open to everyone.

Posted in Flexible working

Increasing number of professional part-time workers feel "trapped"

Posted on July 8, 2013 by allmumkind | Comments (1)

A recent study found that a wide range of professionals who work part-time hours have identified that they feel trapped in their current role. The 1000 part-time workers who took part in the study expressed that in order to balance careers with their family they had to "trade down" their careers to sustain flexible working.

The study of the 1000 part-time workers was carried out by Timewise, used the findings to warn the Government to support more part-time workers in that their roles must not be seen as "low paid" career options.

The survey found that three out of four part-time workers sadly have not been promoted since they shifted their work pattern to flexible working. Over a fifth pointed out that they didn't expect to be promoted whilst holding down a flexible role.

Women's minister Maria Miller last month said flexible working is essential to help women back to work and boost the economy.

Posted in Flexible working

Business leaders support flexible working as it "cuts costs"

Posted on June 25, 2013 by allmumkind | Comments (4)

A group of 22 of Britain's biggest companies have signed a commitment to flexible working rights after finding that "agility" in staff hours and locations can cut workforce costs by as much as 13pc.

Some of UK's largest companies - Lloyds Banking Group, BT, B&Q, Citigroup, Ford Motor company, to name a few have launched a new group called the "Agile Future Forum" whose aim is to revoluntionise working practices which hopefully will boost the UK economy.

Adam Crozier, boss of ITV, say: "Our companies and organisations differ in size, sector and location but we share a common view that workforce agility is generating significant and tangible financial benefits for our businesses."

The group have identified that already nearly 96 percent of companies are using some degree of "flexible working", it has at times gained a negative reputation. Previously, businesses have felt that is increased employers costs. The group feel this is contrary to their experience. "If implemented successfully by business leaders, workforce agility can offer sustainable business performance and engaged employees."

Posted in Flexible working

Only 1 percent of new fathers take up additional paternity leave

Posted on June 19, 2013 by allmumkind | Comments (0)

A study of figures on the new additional paternity rights which came into force in 2011/12, showed that only 1 in 172 new dads actually took advantage of the additional paternity leave on offer. Of the new fathers, almost 300,000 who were eligible only 0.6 per cent took extra time.

Under APL, a father is able to take up to 26 weeks’ leave (of which up to 19 weeks is paid), if their partner has returned to work no earlier than 20 weeks after the birth of the baby.

The TUC has pointed out that the statutory amount which a father would receive weekly needs to be reviewed as this is rarely topped up by employers. The current weekly allowance is £136.

To encourage more dads to take time off in the first year of their child’s life, the TUC is calling on the government to increase the statutory rate of pay to 90 per cent of average earnings, and up initial paternity leave from two to six weeks.

Frances O'Grady - TUC general secretary commented “Poor levels of financial support are preventing new dads from taking extra time off and are particularly affecting low-paid fathers who simply cannot afford to take leave,”

Posted in Flexible working | Tags: Paternity leave for new dads

Is work-life balance working for you?

Posted on June 4, 2013 by allmumkind | Comments (0)

Work-life balance working for you?

Did you know that the term "work-life balance' and 'flexible working' originated in America during the mid 80's. This was a period in the 80's when professionals were working much longer to the detriment of their families. The 'work-life balance' term was created.

Since then we have heard it more and more here in the UK and it is still a subject which can receive a negative reaction amongst a workforce. It can be divided from the 'real work' and often carries a stigma of 'part-time' and work for returning mothers.
Recent studies has been carried out to look at the drivers of trust and well-being. This also looks at environmental workplace factors, work-life integration, flexible working, workloads and what influence they actually have on well-being. It has been identified that there is a strong relationship between these factors and well-being which is a key predictor of performance. Workplaces needs to enable the workforce to flourish deliver their best. It shouldn't be simply about flexible working policies but a culture built on trust.

Posted in Flexible working

Homeworking on the increase

Posted on May 21, 2013 by allmumkind | Comments (0)

Over the past five years, homeworking has risen by almost 15% and the majority of these flexible roles are occupied by women.

The south-east has witnessed the sharpest rise in homeworking, which is closely followed by Scotland and Wales.

Since 2007, up to half a million UK employees are now working from home and gender wise, over two thirds of these are men and more women are working towards homebased roles.

New home-working roles being created this year is mostly occupied by women as a large proportion of new roles are part-time, which is considered a new trend.

Although home-working is on the rise this figure doesn't include the percentage of workers who on "occasion" work from home over each year.

It has been feared that the recession would disrupt flexible working practices, however, with home-working on the rise, the TUC has confirmed that it has become an essential part of the UK labour market.

Technological progress has had an impact on the rise of home-working, as less face to face contact with colleagues or customers has enabled this.

There are major benefits for businesses and employees when working from home through costs, however lack of team cohesion and loneliness can play a demotivating part.

Posted in Flexible working

Culture change could be inspired by shared parental leave

Posted on May 8, 2013 by allmumkind | Comments (0)

It was recently argued by the employment relations minister in the UK that our working practices and job structures have not changed over the years and are still stuck in the 1950's.

Jo Swinson suggests that there is a shortage of female representation in some sectors as traditional views of women and maternity leave contribute to women leaving their careers after having children.

During this economic climate we need more skills and talent to reach across entire workforces and many industries who are missing out on women's talent.

The employment relations minister is fully behind a "new shared parental leave system" which would grant families more flexibility. She suggests there could be more of a "mix and match" of parental care and this could encourage new ways for culture changes. This is positive news for the fathers who wish to be more involved, especially in the early years.

There are plans under way which are out with public consultation groups were the government intends to extend the right to request flexible working to all employees from April 2014 and then introduce a shared parental leave system from April 2015.

She is promoting such changes to organisations who, hopefully will begin to see the benefits of flexible talent and remove the barriers which are today really holding so many parents back.

Posted in Flexible working