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Following on from our recent blog during National Work-life Week, Katie from our PR and Media team has shared her experience on returning to work following maternity leave during a global crisis.

Returning to work following maternity leave was never going to be easy. I’d had nine wonderful months with my little boy and was feeling really nervous about my return to working life. Throw a global pandemic into the mix with no access to childcare and, well, let’s just say I was feeling a little stressed.

Having to return to work after almost a year of having mainly a baby for company, from my dining room, without the usual support from my colleagues in the office and with a nine-month-old baby to look after was going to be… challenging… to say the very least.

Pregnant Then Screwed surveyed over 3,000 working mums* in May 2020 and found that more than three-quarters (78%) found it challenging to manage childcare and paid work during lockdown. As a result, 57% thought increased childcare responsibilities had negatively affected their career prospects or would harm them in future.

I honestly didn’t know how I was possibly going to be able to manage, but luckily for me I had an employer who took the time to understand my home situation and find a solution to work around my home life.

Flexible working

I was able to split my part time hours across five days, meaning I could work around my little boy’s nap time and bed time if needed. 

Zoom catch ups

I had at least weekly catch ups with my team so we could discuss workload, manage priorities and make sure no one had any problems.

Check ins

On top of catch ups, I’d regularly receive messages simply to make sure I was okay. Something so small but which can make all the difference on a difficult day.

Socials and quizzes

As many organisations, families and friends across the country, the Narrators pulled together to lift each other’s spirits during this challenging time with the creation of company quizzes, social (Zoom) catch ups and, of course, Beer Fridays!

And so much more

I honestly don’t know how I would have survived this return to work without such a supportive team around me.

So, if you’re looking for an employer who supports their staff even when times get tough, check out our latest vacancies here.

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* https://workingfamilies.org.uk/workflex-blog/national-work-life-week-balancing-the-parental-equation-at-work/

This post was created on 27th October 2020
Under the category Blog Uncategorised
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