What kind of employer do you want to be?
What sort of leader are you?
The answers to these two questions lie at the heart of the goal behind Parental Choice.
Parental Choice was set up in 2011 by Sarah-Jane Butler, who saw how vital it was for employers to support employees struggling to cope with childcare or eldercare responsibilities, and enable them to have successful and productive careers.
Sarah-Jane, a former Magic Circle lawyer, set-up Parental Choice following her own experience of becoming a parent and trying to juggle the challenges of family life and career progression. The mental and physical stress involved in being a parent or having family care responsibilities often leads employees, mainly women, to take a step down the career ladder. Not only do those employees suffer, but ultimately also their employers as they lose talent and experience.
The mental and physical help and support delivered through employers has been incredibly well received by clients and their employees. Clients include L’Oreal, Enterprise, Jupiter Asset Management and Taylor Wessing who offer wellbeing programmes and family care search support as part of their bespoke packages. This improves gender equality, diversity and inclusion and employee wellbeing.
“Parental Choice's work is making a real difference to working mothers and families. Major companies are engaging with Parental Choice to find a way to get the best out of their employees with families and at the same time finding more flexible ways for parents to work and bring up children. I would highly recommend Parental Choice to HR professionals.” NICOLA HORLICK, CEO MONEY & CO
Parental Choice champions working mothers and actively encourages businesses to think differently about this very talented, able and incredibly willing pool of talent. The team itself are all working mothers with backgrounds in ‘big jobs’, but now work flexibly and part-time, while helping other working mothers to achieve the same. Clients love this. Instantly, there is a rapport with the families they help to support because they have all been through similar experiences. Presentations and talks are delivered by subject matter experts and cover topics not usually found in a company training manual. Employees really do appreciate working for a business which actively cares for their mental health and wellbeing.
In 2018 Enterprise Rent-A-Car signed an agreement to deliver a programme of services for its staff; Leigh Lafever-Ayer, HR Director was full of praise:
‘We are pleased to partner with Parental Choice to help support our employees who are parents. We know that managing a career and parenthood is not always easy and our aim is that Parental Choice will help our employees in some of the difficult moments such as finding childcare and dealing with the financial aspects as well as sharing parenting tips. We hope that this helps our employees find quality solutions that fit their individual needs perfectly.’
Parental Choice partners with a number of businesses with shared values and 2to3days is a fantastic example. Our mission to ensure talented women are not overlooked for top jobs and lobbying corporates to change their view on working mothers, is in line with Parental Choice’s mission of ‘making a difference for working families’.
Trying to juggle a career and caring responsibilities can be challenging on lots of levels. Childcare is inherently inflexible, with nurseries and childminders having set hours, which prove difficult for those with a long commute or working shifts; while sole-charge nannies can be expensive and time-consuming to recruit. So, when looking to create a lifestyle where a career and family are well integrated, something needs to be flexible and, in most cases, this ends up being a mother’s job.
How can Parental Choice make a difference to the 2to3days community?
Parental Choice can add value in many ways, including:
- Helping you understand the childcare or education options available for your child when you are working, decoding the options and helping with your search for childcare and schools.
- Providing advice, information and emotional support on issues around your care responsibilities for elderly relatives.
- Providing payroll and legal support services. If you employ a nanny or other household staff Parental Choice can run your payroll, pension administration and offer an employment law service.
If you are seeking a new childcare solution or care home for an elderly relative, Parental Choice are offering the 2to3 Days community a 10% discount on their services.