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A fifth of businesses in the UK are planning to hire more returning mothers than they did a year ago, according to new research by global workplace provider Regus.
A survey of more than 4,000 senior business people across the UK, found 81% believe that flexible working is key to attracting and retaining women workers.
It also highlights that employers value returning mothers for their experience and skillset, as well as their reliability and excellent time management. Additionally, returning mothers are seen as less likely to change jobs, saving firms the cost of recruitment and re-training.
Other factors that are influencing businesses’ decisions to hire more working mothers include:
– Returning mothers are valued for their experience and skills according to 73% of respondents and are seen as more reliable (24%) and organised (29%)
– Returning mothers were also reported to be very hardworking (18%) and to be more caring workers (17%)
– Professionals also value working mothers’ drive to prove their worth (20%)
Celia Donne, Global Operations Director at Regus, said: “There is a vast amount of untapped potential among skilled and experienced mothers who are unable to work due to family commitments. Flexible working enables companies to tap into this important talent supply and offer returning mothers a way back into the workforce. The benefits to businesses are clear; not least, lower staff turnover and associated hiring and training costs. But in order to retain these valuable employees it is critical that firms offer some level of flexible working, such as the possibility to work closer to home.
“With reports suggesting that if the number of women in the workforce reached the same as that of men national GDP growth could be up to 10% higher, the case for increasing flexible working is very strong. Add to that the value placed on returning mothers and it is evident that businesses need to reassess their use of flexible working to attract top female talent.”