November 28, 2023
A new survey claims that a significant number of working parents are finding it so difficult to juggle home and work responsibilities that they have considered leaving their job. The OnePoll survey [registration] of 2,000 working parents with children aged 18 or under commissioned by REC Parenting, an online platform offering support to parents and carers, revealed that many working parents are at breaking point.
Almost half of working mothers who responded to the survey have considered leaving their job. Almost a third (32 percent) of working fathers also said they had considered quitting as juggling work and parenting responsibilities feels too much to cope with. This demonstrates how much the role of fathers has changed over the course of this decade with so many more now actively sharing caring responsibilities with their partners.
According to the report’s authors, it is vital that employers take note of this and consider how they can enhance the support they offer to their employees who are parents, no matter their gender. It is important they realise working fathers are under pressure too and make sure they feel able to talk about their concerns if they are struggling.
Part-time employees feel even less able to cope than their full-time counterparts. There could be several reasons for this, according to the report: mothers are more likely to be in part-time positions, they may have less access to employee benefits and poorer pay and conditions. Many working parents, particularly mothers also feel guilt, torn between the need to earn a living and the desire to be the one to raise their children. This shows that just offering reduced hours alone to parents is not enough to take the pressure off. Employers need to think more holistically about how they support those with caring responsibilities outside of work.
Over a third of working parents who responded to the survey said they feel very often or often overwhelmed by their responsibilities. The report says this shows that for many there is a constant pressure to juggle work and home life, which is likely to impact their performance, increase their stress levels and negatively impact family life and their children’s development. Employers need to consider how best they can reduce this by creating an effective wellbeing strategy that offers a range of support that can be accessed easily when employees need it.