Written by Dr Emma Waltham | Parental Returners Expert
In this post, I explore how Returning Works’ inclusive, holistic approach engages all stakeholders, giving them a toolkit for supporting parents, creating a workplace where parents can be themselves, work at their full potential and stay on their career pathways.
When partnering with our clients, we understand that various stakeholders will have different priorities and approaches to achieving a common goal.
For example, the HR team may be confident that its flexible working policy meets the needs of returning parents. They trust line managers to deliver the policy consistently and fairly. At the same time, EDI professionals receive feedback that managers are inconsistent in their approach, and this is creating barriers to participation for returning parents.
In this post, I’m going to explore how Returning Works’ inclusive, holistic approach engages all stakeholders, giving them a toolkit for supporting parents, creating a workplace where parents can be themselves, work at their full potential and stay on their career pathways.
1 – Human Resources
In our conversations with HR professionals, they often tell us that their family-friendly policies and procedures meet the needs of returning parents. For example, generous parental leave, options for flexible working arrangements and paid KIT days during parental leave.
However, policies alone often don’t go far enough; it’s vital that they are clear and easy to understand, accessible and – most importantly – consistently implemented. Returning Works can help by:
Reviewing your organisation’s policies, procedures and benefits – how do they compare with competitors?
Setting up a parental portal, with information all in one place.
Creating content – bite-size training videos and guides hosted on your learning portal, easily accessed by line managers, as and when needed.
How does your organisation's parental provision compare to your competitors? Book a call to discuss our Family-Friendly Review.
2 – EDI
EDI professionals understand that policies and procedures alone aren’t enough; real change is about challenging embedded behaviours and attitudes, and creating an inclusive culture that resonates throughout the organisation.
Those working in EDI roles frequently receive first-hand feedback from employees, managers and networks about the issues people are facing, the support they need, what's working and what isn't. Our team can provide support through:
Family Friendly Review – deep-dive evaluation of all family policies, processes, benefits, training and provision.
Raising awareness – get conversations started across the organisation.
Parental transition coaching – easing returning mums back into the workplace after parental leave and supporting them to continue their career trajectories.
3 – Line Managers
Returning mums often tell us that having the right line manager is ‘make or break’ when it comes to continuing their career after parental leave. Mums report that while many managers are well-meaning, they often lack empathy and understanding. We can support line managers through:
Parental allyship events – training that shows managers and colleagues how to create a family friendly culture, sharing a best-practice framework that will make expectant parents feel supported and valued.
Coaching for managers – give managers the opportunity to develop their empathy and understanding, so they can confidently and consistently support pregnant team members and new parents.
Let's talk about Parental Allyship Training for your organisation's line managers.
Get in touch, and let’s start a conversation about how we can engage all of your stakeholders and work together to create a welcoming environment where working parents feel valued, appreciated and eager to continue on their career pathways.