Research* reveals that 59 per cent of working parents have experienced burnout in 2022, increasing their stress levels and frustration at work. The survey of more than 2,000 UK SME employees highlighted how working parents are pulling off the ultimate balancing act. Excluding partner support, nearly half (47 per cent) of surveyed working parents said they never had childcare support at home, while 45 per cent had help occasionally, and only seven per cent said they always had help available.
Employers perceived to offer more support to male working parents
Male working parents are more likely to say they received various forms of support for childcare, with 22 per cent agreeing that their employer supported them with working remote or hybrid working arrangements. 15 per cent of working males received additional leave days, compared to nine per cent of females and 12 per cent received a generous parental leave policy, versus eight per cent of working women.
Covid-19 has significant impact on parents’ mental health
A greater proportion of working parents are much more likely to be impacted by Covid-19. The pressure to manage high-stress situations has had a significant effect on their mental health with 61 per cent of working parents revealing that the pandemic has caused them to feel stressed.
When asked whether their employers have made parenthood easier or harder since the pandemic, 24 per cent of working parents said that their employer has made their life more difficult, but almost one in five (19 per cent) have made it easier.
Employer support with career progression and finances
Most working parents feel they have the same career opportunities as non-parents in their organisation with 56 per cent stating this, however, female working parents were 16 per cent more likely to disagree.
The cost-of-living crisis is really having an impact on working households, especially those with dependents to support. The survey revealed that almost two thirds (64 per cent) of working parents are feeling stressed about their finances, almost one in five (18 per cent) have lost motivation at work because of this, and almost one in five (18 per cent) are looking for a better paid job.
To help support their finances, 16 per cent of working parents are calling on their employer to pay for or subsidise childcare, and 41 per cent would like to be paid bonuses or overtime. More than half (52 per cent) would like their employer to assist with financial guidance on retirement and pensions.
Ben Thompson, CEO and co-founder of Employment Hero, said: “The past year has presented unique challenges for working parents. Most employers are providing support as best they can, but there are some simple and cost-effective measures they can implement to help support team members with care commitments and protect them from burnout, such as providing flexible working arrangements, a better work-life balance, and recognising the complex issues that working parents are likely to be facing and providing tailored support to help.
“Fostering a workplace culture that welcomes working families is incredibly important because it helps to foster a culture in which parents or carers know they will not be judged for requesting the flexibility they need to get their balance right.”
*Research from Employment Hero