Does this sound familiar?

After child one, two, three or four (in fact, who’s counting?!) your maternity leave happens to extend into a career break, which leads to you becoming a full time mum and thus starts a blur of school runs, a feeling all you’re doing is constantly feeding your tribe and the fear you’ll never be capable or have the time to step back into the workplace?

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(and things to consider next time!)

Returner programmes are becoming increasingly popular. Rightly so when one considers the enormous amount of talent estimated to be ready to reignite their career yet lacking in ways to access employment. PWC’s 2016 report titled the £1billion potential of Women Returners highlighted that a suspected 427,000 highly qualified women are currently on career breaks and ready to return. More and more companies are putting in place Returner programmes which is heartening to see but feedback from participants is that not all are set up for success.

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Career Returner | Women Returners | Return to Work - Lessons Learnt

Emma Bewley, Head of Fund Investment for a private client business, talks to us about her return to work following a career break:

Returnships & Returner Opportunities | Return To Work Programmes

The Problem As a nation we’ve been hammering on about the need for more senior part-time positions for well over two decades. Yet stubbornly corporations seem to adopt a normative posture; few acknowledge the vital importance of the part-time labour market and its direct, inextricable links to our dwindling pipeline of female talent as we […]

Returnships & Returner Opportunities | Return To Work Programmes

We regularly see much written about motherhood and flexible working, yet less often do we get a glimpse in to the experiences of fathers and flexible working.

Sheryl Sandberg in ‘Lean In’ promulgates the notion that the man whom a woman chooses as their partner is one of the most significant career decisions she will make, especially if she is planning a family. This however is based on a premise that should the man wish to support his wife’s career there will be accessible flexible work schedules available to him if he desires to keep working himself.

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Returnships & Returner Opportunities | Return To Work Programmes

In 2005 the Harvard Business Review published an article under Career Planning titled Off-Ramps and On-Ramps – Keeping Talented Women on the Road to Success, by Sylvia Ann Hewlett and Carolyn Buck Luce.

At the time the article stimulated great debate and discussion, both in the US and the UK, around the reasons women were ‘opting out’ of long-term career progression and how to change this. A flurry of gender diversity programs were quickly released as corporations worked to stymie any chance of being perceived as unfriendly to working women.

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Returnships & Returner Opportunities | Return To Work Programmes

The lack of women in senior positions in both government and business has been a much discussed issue for some time. However, with the exception of the publication of Lord Davies’ ‘Women on Boards’, it is debatable whether anything of any real substance has been done to address the crux of the problem over the past decade. Read more