Part Time Work: Our Advice in Practical Parenting Magazine
As regular readers of Practical Parenting magazine we were delighted to help when they asked us for some advice on part working for mums. Here's what we said:
While you're entitled to ask to go part-time, your employer is not legally obliged to say yes. The key is to make part-time working sound like a good option.
Do Your Homework"Many employers find that part-timers work more productively as they're used to having to get a lot done in a short space of time. It's all about getting this across to your employer," says Clare Birtles, editor of www.areturntowork.co.uk. "You have to accept your job description might change - it's about being flexible on both sides."
Investigate the company's policy with the HR department before meeting with your boss, and talk to other members of staff who've gone part-time.
If going back to your old role just won't work, you might find yourself thinking about a new role. Don't assume that a year off has left you rusty. It can also add new strings to your bow.
"Adapt your CV and use what you've absorbed in bringing up children to add additional skills to your repertoire such as time management or creativity. If you've learned first aid or set up a mum's circle then use this if it's relevant to skills you might need in your chosen part-time role," advises Clare Birtles.
Aim HighDon't assume a job would be too much for you - give the application a try. "Apply for both full and part-time jobs. If you impress at interview, an employer might even consider a job share. Check out all avenues for job adverts, from the internet to your local paper. Most of all, be confident. You've brought a new life into the world, what a fantastic contribution you've already made to society," says Clare.
Where Do I Start with My Own Business"Look at your skills - a writer could consider freelance writing, a teacher might offer private tuition, IT professionals could set up their own consultancy or work on a contract basis.
Have you got a hobby you could develop into a small business? If you're looking for help starting up, there are plenty of government initiatives," says Clare Birtles.
The Enterprise Agency offers help with writing a business plan, gaining funding and getting in touch with local assistance, while Business Link is an organisation set up to promote businesses locally and nationally. You can have an advisor visit your home or business to give mentoring advice.