A recently released article by People Management reveals that 34% of working parents feel that balancing work with family life takes a toll on their mental health. Rushing from School drop off to missing out on special plays mean parents are often torn whilst in the workplace and cannot concentrate or give their all. This may result in low employee engagement, performance issues and potentially time off sick due to mental health issues.
Businesses are encouraged to support parents in the workplace which helps you become an ‘employer of choice.’ This is possible through adapting various HR policies such as;
- Flexible working: allowing parents to start or finish earlier, working around their schedule. Or working from home to cut down on commuting time.
- Shared parental leave: promoting this option to soon-to-be fathers allows mothers to come back to work sooner and gives fathers an opportunity to spend precious time with their new-borns which has traditionally been seen as time just for new mothers.
- Unpaid parental leave: each employee is entitled to up to 18 weeks unpaid leave until the child’s 18th birthday. (Across their working time not at each employer).
The Office of National Statistics revealed on the 26th September 2017 that there has been an increase of 11.8% for mothers back in employment between 1996 and 2017. That’s an incredible 1.2 million. This shows times are changing and the relationship between working mothers and employment is positive. More change needs to be made to encourage fathers to have the same opportunities, to allow them time away from the work place without feeling stressed or anxious which can result in further mental health issues.
For more information on how you can incorporate these policies into your workplace and/or have your maternity/paternity documents up to date, contact Impress HR – a free HR support and signposting service for businesses in Wiltshire.