Attrition is costly; at up to 250% of the annual salary, it’s a significant impact to lose staff. In STEM industries where women are already in the minority, organisations really need to work out ways of retaining women and supporting both parents through life transitions. Rebecca discusses the ways that employers can support new parents to ensure women return after parental leave.
- Offer flexible working conditions – Covid has shown this can be the case.
- Offer a gender neutral parental leave policy - once we are there we can really start challenging the status quo.
- Normalising parental care in the workplace - so more men are openly able to take up the responsibility of caring without stigma.
- Offer both new parents support, communication, connection, and care.
- Support the integration back into work.
- Support the manager to support their employee better.
It is important to shift the balance so that men and women have more equitable roles. The benefits of creating a more equitable work environment are:
- Companies benefit by creating an inclusive, positive working environment thereby reducing the attrition rate, and allowing women to continue their career trajectories, thus creating more opportunities for equitable leadership teams.
- In the home environment, men taking on more of the childcare responsibilities, housework and mental load create great role models for their kids and this allows women to get back to work earlier. Families benefit by having engaged fathers.
- The community benefits as women typically spend more money in the community than men so if they are earning more they are spending more.