Flexperience, Cheltenham's newest (and only) recruitment company specialising in flexible and part time work is officially 8 weeks old, and what an amazing 8 weeks it has been. We're talking to an average of 15 ladies a week who are all searching for the holy grail of being able to pursue a fulfilling and rewarding career whilst also being able to spend quality time with their children. We've been contacted by countless more strangers who aren't necessarily looking for a new role yet but who all want to show their support to our #miniworkrevolution and to thank us for everything that we are doing to make flexible working much more of a norm in Gloucestershire. We're supremely grateful for the huge outpouring of support for our initiative but our passion for promoting flexible working in the county is sky high and we couldn't be prouder for using the F word as frequently as we possibly can!
Below are just a few of the reasons why we know this is so important and why we are working non-stop to make Flexperience a success:
1. It is estimated that 54,000 women a year lose their job because of maternity discrimination. This is totally unacceptable in 2018 in the UK.
2. Our parents and teachers did everything to drill into girls around the country that we were as good as boys and that we could do anything we put our minds too. Why then, are we allowing this talent that has been so carefully nurtured to be wasted once we have children?
3. I too constantly remind my little girl and my nieces that they are super girls and that they can achieve anything they want to as long as they dream big. So I will do everything in my power to ensure that when the time comes for them to have children, they don't have to make the choices that many of the women of my generation have had to make. My dream is that their dreams of a perfect career will no longer have to end when they become mothers.
4. The working week of Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, was formed around the start of the 20th century- life in 2018, is totally unrecognisable to back then so, please someone tell me, why do we think that this model of working is still fit for purpose now?
5. Women around the world are tremendously educated and total bright sparks- we deserve to be able to choose rewarding work that makes use of our education, skills, knowledge and experiences rather than just having to take any old job that comes along.
6. All too often, in workplaces around the country, those working part time are looked upon with much less value than their colleagues working in the office until after 5pm. Sadly, many part timers are regarded as parents who will scarper at the first sound of their child sneezing. Now is surely the time for society to be able to grasp that flexible working is not just something that benefits the employee but is something that will bring huge benefits to the company too (more on that another day!).
7. Yes, Mad Men may be the box set of choice for many looking for a binge watch, but the days of the suit jacket on the back of the chair belongs right back in that box set.
8. Despite The Flexible Working Regulations coming into force in 2014, research from Digital Mums estimates that only 12% of people have asked for it. Let's face it, most people are too embarrassed to use the F word in the workplace.
Use of the F word in the Flexperience household is rife- I'm actively encouraging my 3 year old to shout it as loudly as she can and without shame and if you'd join me, my dream for our little girls and boys will seem just that little bit closer. Are you proud to use the F word too?