A new study has identified that more than 50% or professional women are concerned about their financial situation once the reach retirement.
YouGov who conducted the research found that of the 53% of women identified as concerned, just short of 40% did believe that their existing plans for a comfortable retirement would be achieved.
Over 2000 women were questioned and nearly a quarter of this population, between the ages of 40 and 54 have need even planned or considered any form of savings for their retirement. A staggering 58% found the whole matter simply to confusing to deal with.
Even though there was a population of women identified as making saving plans for their retirement, the financial sum was less than £100 per month. This accounted for nearly 50% of then women asked.
The Head of Financial Services at YouGov identified that "There's a real need for pensions that take account of women's maternity leave and career breaks."
allmumkind’s Diversity statement
allmumkind is committed to equality for parents who are seeking a better work-life balance through flexible working and the opportunity to continue building a successful career. We identify the desire for many women post motherhood, with a wealth of experience and skills to secure and sustain senior positions. This drives our focus in running a progressive and successful business.
Our service towards candidates will ensure we advertise and market our site through a diverse range of mediums, which do not discriminate and respect individuals. We will follow policies and regularly monitor data and update where necessary.
Our aim and continued drive is to work with companies who place diversity at the top of their recruitment and employment policies. We can support companies to hire flexibly which will enable them to benefit from;
- Achieving better retention and commitment
- Create a diverse working culture/environment
- Achieve better standards of motivation and morale
- Better understanding of different markets
- Reduce turnover and costs on repeat recruitment fees
- Although diversity is good in itself, it has been measured that it is beneficial for business
We believe that in today’s working community, organisations perform more successfully through building a diverse workforce.
A City survey identified that women in Financial Services were being paid 21% less than their male colleagues performing a similar role. This percentage converts to around £30,000 less in complete pay which includes bonuses.
With large City firms focussing on their diversity policies, the research shows that women are still behind when it comes their financial reward.
Not only does the gap need to be drastically narrowed for equality reasons but more importantly, to attract top talent regardless of gender. Retention of talent here is significant also when the economy is in such a downturn.
The Home Secretary and Equalities Minister, Theresa May enforced "gagging" clauses in contracts back in 2010 to discontinue City workers discussing their pay. Since the enforcement of this clause, there appears to be little effect.
Nearly 2000 City professionals took part in a survey which showed that overall, employees were less satisfied with their base salary. The results also showed that the pay rises were less common in comparison to 2010.
There has been a rise in women on boards, however a report by Deloitte has found that the positions are non-executive positions rather than the more sought after executive roles.
It is still proven that men take the more important nine out of ten positions on boards and this activity still happened even though the government put gender diversity at the top of their agenda.
This agenda point has arisen from Lord Davies who has put pressure on UK businesses to have 25% of female representation on their boards by 2015.
A target of 30% has been indicated as a target by David Cameron, which so far has had the backing of many of the UK’s biggest companies.
According to Cranfield School of Management eleven FTSE 100 companies still do not have any female representation at all on their board.
One company employing almost 50% of female representation on their board is Diageo and in second place is Burberry with over a third of females sitting on their board.
There has been some improvement since the late 90’s where around only 8% of females sat on FTSE 100 boards. Since then, this figure has doubled.
The Treasury failed to consider how crucial policies would affect women before the 2010 spending review, according to a report by the equality watchdog.
The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) said it was "unable to establish" whether government had checked how its flagship schemes would hit vulnerable people – despite this being a legal necessity.
The government appeared to rush through these points and concentrate more so on the more “attractive” policies to win over supporters.
The Treasury was found to be weak in three areas. One of the main cuts was, capping of household benefits – limiting welfare to £500 a week for couples and lone parent households. The testing of the impact on women was not tested prior to the announcement of these cuts.
The study found that the Treasury could quite often dismiss arguments around gender and argue they often don’t have accurate information. This is seen as disregarding these sub-groups. The commission has warned they may be breaking the law by enforcing indirect discrimination.
The majority of part-time workers today are women and to put this group at a particular disadvantage would be considered unlawful.
The commission's report follows a legal case brought by the Fawcett Society, which campaigns on women's rights, in August 2010. Campaigners argued the government could not show it had assessed whether the emergency budget in June that year would increase or reduce inequality between women and men.
It is estimated that nearly 5,500 women are missing from Britain’s 26,000 most powerful positions. This eye opening find is according to a new report issued by the Equality and Human Rights Commission.
The report found that contributions towards equality from all sectors and occupational categories was not only “tortuously slow” but it “regularly stalls or even reverses”. The report also finds that women are better educated more than ever and are actually achieving better degree results than men. Kay Carberry, Commissioner at the EHRC goes on to say….”These women step on the career ladder and work hard, with a position at the top firmly in sight. In their early 20′s they level peg with men and we would expect them to enter the management ranks at the same rate as men. However, several years down the track a different picture emerges – one where many have disappeared from the paid workforce or remain trapped in the ‘marzipan layer’ below senior management, leaving the higher ranks to be dominated by men”.
Interestingly the findings shows a slight increase compared to 2007-2008. Increases in judiciary, senior police officers, trade union and general secretaries. These figures were actually small. A significant drop was across 10 sectors including – members of cabinet, local authority, public appointments and the health service to name a few.
I couldn’t resist writing about the Government’s proposed changes to update workplace regulations – additional “flexibility”!. You may have sensed, this is quite close to my heart.
Firstly, I must highlight the groans which I can already hear quite loudly from “some” employers, not all may I add. And yes, I agree small businesses will feel the pinch, however in the grand scheme of the things I feel that additional flexibility sprinkled across our society is what we so need to bring us into the modern world we all want to be part of. Some concerns have already been echoed by The Federation of Small Businesses “warning of the rule changes which may complicate current rules and may be a burden to businesses wishing to expand in a tough economic climate”.
Now before we get too excited, the Government will begin consulting on “plans” to give both parents an extra month off during the first year of baby’s life. The proposed date for introducing this is 2015. They may not actually even happen?
If they do go ahead, the way in which I interpret this is that the new flexible working plans will not only support parents with young families but anyone with “caring” responsibilities outside of their job. This would be a huge benefit to many people and their families in this country if it does become policy.
Looking at this from an employer’s perspective, it needn’t be considered a complete disadvantage for them. An example of my own experience when returning to work from maternity leave very early, as this was mainly for reasons of not wanting to impact my own career aspirations, but actually support a small business during an economic downturn. At the time, this policy would have worked a treat! I was very aware that I needed to return to work and at that time I could have concentrated on a few essential inputs to support the business and then move back out of my role to continue with my maternity leave. Perhaps this is what some businesses would actually benefit from without panicking that the world will crumble if a key employee’s skills/knowledge is absent for a period of time? I appreciate not always ideal for some businesses.
I really do think life has moved forward in our society. So many women return to work after their maternity leave nowadays and fathers do play a part in caring for children and domestic duties more than they ever did. I think the additional flexibility for dad’s is positive, however, I believe this will be harder to implement as it may simply result in some damaging their career’s. This has been highlighted from many business experts and also men’s “ego’s” may get in the way! I am not sure all men (especially if the main breadwinner) are going to take advantage of this. Again, really will depend on the father’s career, company and I think the individual. A good benefit to have though..
The first year of a babies life changes almost daily and it is a time to be enjoyed and is very precious. I guess the reason I am in full support for more flexibility is that it can be achieved, sensibly and may in fact assist some families to keep their career responsibilities on track as it certainly doesn’t need to be a “knee jerk” reaction going back to work. This new policy may just help some, not all, however it’s a good step towards supporting their family in what is quite a hectic and pressurised world we live in today…..
Single Parent……….. Double Trouble?
Being a parent is not easy. Being a single parent is twice as hard. Responsibilities, worries, bills, school runs, ballet classes, football club…. are borne by one pair of shoulders and even Mr. T couldn’t carry that burden alone.
For whatever reason or circumstance finds you in this position, it is one that is initially daunting but with a bit of support, a leap of faith and a good sense of humour, it is one that you can not only survive but embrace. You can sleep easy at night. You can still have a career. You can pay your bills.
Your life doesn’t stop; it just takes an unexpected direction that can initially throw you into unfamiliar territory with a large pinch of guilt and a sprinkle of self-doubt.
My journey began when my daughter was a baby. I have since learned through first-hand experience about everything from working tax credits to childcare, flexible working hours to making your pound go further.
From my experience, the work/home balance is a fine juggling act for every mother but once struck, it provides space, self-esteem and fulfilment as a working woman and recharged batteries, passion, excitement and fulfilment as a loving mother.
That pearl of wisdom relayed, I am no expert but knowledge is power and it goes a long way. It gave me strength to know that I wasn’t alone or some societal anomaly and that there are a lot of good organisations and websites out there (allmumkind and gingerbread to name but two) that provide practical information and support and don’t make you feel like the pip in the apple.
Over the next few months, I shall tackle a number of topics with the aim of clearing the mists of uncertainty and providing a bit of much-needed sanity. I shall be offering practical advice and support for those of you out there that need a nudge in the right direction or just want a friendly ear to listen to your problems or answer your nagging concerns. I am more than happy to answer questions or comments to my post.
Posted in Family, Guest posts, Mummy and working, Single "super" mummy | Tags: Balance, Benefits, Careers, Childcare, Employment, Financial, Flexible, Mummy, Responsibility, Single Parent, Support Network, Women, Working
I have always considered Time Management a real strength of mine. Until I had children I do question this. I am a bit of a perfectionist. Well in fact to be honest I am a “huge” perfectionist and as much as I still try to work on reducing my expectations across all areas of my life, since the children arrived it still causes me problems.
Don’t get me wrong, I live by lists, small and long lists but I am still always in a mad rush. The satisfaction when I have cleared a huge list, then another appears. I am not sure if I have too much to do at times and find it hard to say “no”. With 2 children, a house to run, developing my own business and additional freelance work it sounds like pretty much like most mums workload? Right?
So, why does it feel at times as if the wheels are falling off?
I still manage to deliver though, no matter how long the list, even if it kills me!
I live by Time Management and think it is an essential accessory for any working mums. We always manage to dig it out when up against it!
Today I have been working in London. I meticulously plan for the next day, get up earlier than needed, see to children, of course perfect myself and leg it for the tube. Whilst in transit, I use my blackberry all the way until I arrive at work. There isn’t a spare moment. The same applies on the journey home and then the mummy/domestic duties begin!
I have literally just sat down at 10pm after making tea for kids, read with oldest child, bath and bed and just to finish myself off I have been for a run to straighten my mind.
Does this sound familiar?!
A really interesting report issued by the UK Women’s Budget Group along with the Fawcett Society points out that the 2011 Budget doesn’t help those affected by public spending cuts, rising unemployment and may actually widen gender inequality.
Within this report, such findings include;
The prospect if more women than men in the UK will be unemployed if the current economic strategy continues.
The report goes on to highlight, that by removing the protections of men and women in caring responsibilities will hinder them from working.
Interestingly, the report suggests that businesses who will be set to benefit most from new tax breaks and other incentives are more often men. It is felt that schemes to support women in business are scrapped.
The acting Chief Executive of the Fawcett Society, Anna Bird, rightly hits back saying “ It’s time for the government to admit there is a problem with “business as usual” and recognise that to grow, we need everyone to play their rightful part. Women play a valuable role in the economy, but we urgently need to close the gender pay gap – in the private sector this stands at 21 per cent. – broaden women’s employment options and provide more support to enable more women to start up business”