workingmums & workingdads Annual Survey 2019

Family Support


2,716 people responded to our 2019 survey

Key demographics of the survey respondents:

  • 79% of the respondents were mothers, 10% were fathers and 11% did not have children.
  • 45% are aged between 22-37 years old, 28% are between 38-44 years old, and 22% are over 45 and 5% were 21 and under.
  • 70% have more than 10 years work experience, and 49% have over 15 years experience.
  • 38% are management level or above, with 31% having had more than 5 years management experience.
  • 9% care for an elderly relative.

Flexible Working

For those on parental leave, 57% had not discussed flexible working with their managers before they went on leave. 52% of those on leave have not yet applied formally for flexible working. 62% would consider leaving their jobs if they get turned down when they do apply.

57% agree that they have not had any career progression since having children. 59% agree that having access to flexible working would help progress their career. 80% of those already working flexibly say that they feel stuck in their current role as new flexible jobs are hard to get.

32% feel discriminated against in their work place due to their flexible working arrangement. 29% have had a flexible working request turned down.

Flexibility is important to jobseekers

Our survey showed that the offer of flexible working is important to jobseekers. 93% favour a four day week on full pay. 34% researched flexible working before applying for a job, whilst 28% asked about flex at interview. 36% checked about flexible working before accepting a job and 31% only accepted their current role due to the flexible working on offer – they would have otherwise turned it down.

Differences between mums and dads

43% of mums work part time compared to only 4% of dads. 22% of mums are working full time with no flexibility but the percentage is much higher for dads – almost 50% work full time with no flexibility.

Who are we working for?

22% work for an SME, and 29% work for a company with more than 250 employees. 16% work in the public sector, and 9% are self employed.

Older age groups

For those over the age of 45, 32% felt that they needed the most flexibility when their children started primary school.

43% experience menopause symptoms which affect their ability to work. 35% of these women either felt that they could not discuss it with their employer, or did discuss it but their employer was unsympathetic.

Just over 50% agree that they would like to continue working long after the usual retirement age if they are able to.

46% feel that they have faced discrimination with regard to getting a job due to their age, and 32% feel that they have faced discrimination with regards getting promotion due to their age. 73% agree that employers don’t appreciate experience enough.

What is important at work?

63% think salary is important at work, but 78% think flexible working is important showing that respondents rate it higher than salary. 51% think it is important to work for a socially responsible employer. 54% think well being policies are important and 50% place importance on pension.


68% are interested in retraining. 85% are interested in taking a course to improve their skills.

Starting a business

54% have considered setting up their own business. The biggest reason by far given for considering starting a business or franchise is the need for greater flexibility and more control – 31% said this. Others reasons given were wanting to be their own boss (12%) and that they had always wanted to set up their own business (15%).



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