Women Re-Entering The Workforce

Having been in research recruitment for a long time and seen many changes over the years there is still one hurdle that still exists in many companies, that is the acceptance to take on mums who want to work part time / contract.

I have heard all the excuses, yet still believe there is huge value to re-engage with the mums and provide the flexibility they need in the workforce.

As an industry, we are losing valuable talent mainly seniors who just give up trying to re-enter due to the negative reactions or pressure to go into full time employment.

It is time to re-think and come up with solutions that can work for everyone its not that hard. Corporations seem more open and willing to adapt, where I see most resistance is with research agencies and the thought that the clients will arc up.

Nothing is further from the truth if you have 2 seniors servicing a couple of accounts working 3 day each and the client is aware up front there should be no issues as someone is always on hand during the week to attend to their needs.

The bonus is that seniors working part time /contract are more inclined to be self-sufficient and disciplined to get the work done.

Thoughts Welcome?

Andy McLellan, Director, AML Resources

About AMSRS 423 Articles
The Australian Market & Social Research Society Limited (AMSRS) is a not-for-profit professional membership body of over 2,000 market and social research professionals who are dedicated to increasing the standard and understanding of market and social research in Australia. The Society assists members to develop their careers by heightening professional standards and ethics in the fields of market and social research.

2 Comments on Women Re-Entering The Workforce

  1. Such a simple article and message and yet it’s such a shame so many research agencies (and orgs client-side) aren’t taking it on board!

    I’m one of these women. I have several kids and ample expertise in the sector and love the work but also love being there for my kids. I cannot tell you how difficult it is to find a decent role that’s 3 days a week – job share or otherwise. I spent a number of years treading-water in a firm I wasn’t happy with, just waiting around for a decent job to move to. I finally made the move last year and haven’t looked back. My new employer realised if they wanted good people they had to look beyond the ‘full time commitment’ notion and take on two skilled researchers in a job share arrangement. Both of us are mums. It’s been fantastic.

    Hopefully other orgs take a look at their thinking on this and start adopting more flexible employment strategies for people that don’t want to be locked into full time work.

  2. Dear Andy,
    As a woman returning to work I found your article interesting. It reflects my own experience.

    I have a Doctorate in educational research and also three other higher institution qualifications, including professional researcher. I have six years of voluntary research experience in schools while I’ve been raising my children.

    I am extremely “self-sufficient and disciplined to get the work done.” This not recognised by others though. It’s as if my professionalism is past tense and I’m too outdated to be used.

    Becoming an independent researcher looks like the only option. One I am now truly excited by.

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