Giving men and women the same opportunities at work and at home is crucial to achieving a gender-balanced workforce at all levels. More women are in work than ever before but their share of family responsibilities has not diminished – indeed it may have increased in recent years due to welfare cuts.
When women have children, they are more likely to drop out of the workforce and/or take part-time work than men. 37% of mothers with dependent children are working part-time compared to only 6% of fathers. However research by YouGov[i] shows that men want to spend more time with their children and share the childcare responsibility more equally. Moreover partners who manage to share responsibility at work and at home are happier and more successful[ii]. Employers need to take those aspirations into account if they want to attract and retain the best talent.
What is at stake is not only women’s progression but also employees' wellbeing. Indeed, research shows that partners who manage to share responsibility at work and at home are happier and more successful. This is why we encourage our members, and all employers to:
- Offer agile working arrangements to both men and women equally.
- Promote Shared Parental Leave (SPL)
- Support carers in the workplace
[i] YouGov, ‘Equal Rights over Child Custody’, YouGov: What the World Thinks <https://yougov.co.uk/news/2012/06/13/equal-rights-over-child-custody/> [accessed 25 November 2015].
[ii] Linda Harradine and Örebro university, ‘Two-Generation Gender Equality Study Shows Career Benefits’ <http://www.oru.se/English/News/Two-generation-gender-equality-study-show... [accessed 25 November 2015].