Parents say support from their potential employer is important, new research reveals – is your work doing enough?

Nine in 10 working parents say having support from their prospective employer is “very important”

Chinese businesswomen working at home with baby daughter on lap in front of laptop
(Image credit: Getty Images)

In the hustle of modern work life, parents are telling it like it is: having bosses who get the parent juggle is a game-changer.  

Balancing a job with family chaos isn’t anything new – the latest evidence was from a report that lays bare the 'disproportionate impact' childcare has on a mother's career. And with the mental load many working mothers get lumped with, support from any outlet is not only beneficial, it's necessary.

It makes sense then, that a whopping nine in 10 parents have highlighted the significance of getting the support they need from potential employers, especially when contemplating a new role, according to REC Parenting statistics. The survey, which involved 2,000 parents, also unveiled a divide between mums and dads too: 54 percent of working mothers believe this is “very important”, compared to 38 percent of fathers. 

The findings also suggested that parents appreciate a culture that enables a work-life balance, as head of employer services at Working Families Joanne Waterworth said was a “top priority” for parents and carers. 

She told People Management magazine: “Many employers have already woken up to the benefits of supporting their employees through flexible working, but that’s just one piece of the puzzle. Cultivating the right kind of culture, where the demands of family life are understood and appreciated, is critical to creating environments where parents and carers can thrive and, crucially, for attracting new talent.” 

Father feeding baby boy while using laptop at home

Father feeding baby boy while using laptop at home

(Image credit: Getty Images)

There are so many ways employers can support parents, from reviewing benefits packages to simply being compassionate and understanding of the challenges working mums and dads face. But previous research from REC Parenting has also revealed that 67 percent of parents say they’re not getting enough from employers’ benefits.

Ana Aznar, founder and CEO of REC Parenting, said it benefits employers to have a work environment that makes parents feel valued and supported: “Working parents make up a significant proportion of the UK workforce and it’s vital that employers recognise the pressure they are under by offering both empathy and support. With almost a million vacancies still open, employers can gain a real competitive advantage by creating a culture and workplace that supports people in all aspects of their lives.”

She added: “Employee retention has been cited as the biggest challenge for HR in 2024 and providing support for working parents should be considered as part of the strategy to address this threat.”

The takeaway? As a manager, be kind, and as a parent, be kind to yourself. 

In other family news, these 3 family hacks could improve your relationship when you also both work full-time and Kate Middleton speaks out on behalf of working parents and urges employers to prioritise ‘parental wellbeing’ in the workplace

Daniella Gray
Family News & Wellbeing Writer

From building healthy family relationships to self-care tips for mums and parenting trends - Daniella also covers postnatal workouts and exercises for kids. After gaining a Print Journalism BA Hons degree and NCTJ Diploma in Journalism at Nottingham Trent University, Daniella started writing for Health & Wellbeing and co-hosted the Walk to Wellbeing podcast. She has also written for Stylist, Natural Health, The Sun UK and Fit & Well. In her free time, Daniella loves to travel, try out new fitness classes and cook for family and friends.