Working mothers reveal what makes a great employer

Woman laughing while sitting at a desk
June 8, 2021

Do you ‘get’ working mums and flexible work? We surveyed working mums registered as candidates at 2to3days and asked what employers need to do if they want to embrace flexible working practices. Here’s the top-5 topics emerging from our survey.

1. Honesty

Many mothers talked about the need to be able to sit down with their boss and have a completely honest conversation about their needs.

“Be very clear with your work about the hours you can realistically achieve.”

“Be honest with your employer and give them plenty of notice of the time you need to take off.”

2. Part-time means part-time

Not a full-time job on a part-time basis (and salaries.) Some mothers explained that working part-time had, in reality, meant working full-time in fewer hours, for less money.

“Make sure you don't wind up putting in more time at work than you have agreed. You can easily get taken advantage of to do more for no return.”

“Agree with your workplace what is expected of you so that you do not get drawn into a scenario where you end up doing 5 days a week work in 2 or 3 days.”

3. Make it easy to leave on time

Our working mums often mentioned the strain of presenteeism. “Even if you start earlier than everyone else it’s still hard to sign off before office hours end”. We say if someone is putting in the hard work but needs to finish earlier – help them out the door.

As this mother advises others: “Get in on time, get your head down and get out when your contracted hours are up. No one else will tell you to leave on time, and you shouldn't feel bad for doing so.”

4. Despite technology, don’t expect to be in touch 24/7

In order to do the juggle between home and work, boundaries between work and home need to be tight. Emergencies aside, mother’s claimed – it’s not fair to expect an immediate answer to emails or phone calls when someone has clocked off.

As these mothers explained: “Don't be connected all the time. Make sure clients and employers respect these boundaries.”

“Be really clear with your work about what your boundaries are, but also, make sure the company knows they can still push you to your full potential.”

5. Be appreciative

Some of the comments involved finding an employer who could really understand how much mothers do outside of the office.

“Find a job that you love and that allows you to work from home, accompanied by a flexible and kind boss!!”

“There are lots of people and companies out there with great ideas who are really supportive of flexible working.”

If you’re looking to hire incredibly talented women into senior roles with flexible work options, then try our post a job services or speak with our team about a bespoke job advertising package with 2to3days. 


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Our purpose is to accelerate gender equality in the workplace through the power of flexible working...