FAMILY FRIENDLY - HANDY HINTS & TIPS
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WORK & FAMILY - Balancing the Partnership:
Striking a balance between work and family can seem the tallest of orders. If your employer is unreasonable or inflexible, chances are you're in turmoil, torn between family obligations and your job.
If your employer understands that you sometimes have to deal with pressing family needs during work hours, you're more likely to concentrate on your job once you've solved your family problem.
Amazingly, most workers - men and women - manage to juggle everything after a fashion. Nowadays it is a little easier as many companies have become more flexible.
Work & Family is not just about childcare. Finding time to care for partners, elderly parents and relatives with a disability are also big considerations.
In families where the sole parent or both parents work, men and women have to share taking time off work because of family responsibilites. Men are just as likely to take time off to care for an elderly relative.
Family-friendly policies don't just benefit workers - companies also reap enormous rewards.
Benefits include improved productivity and staff morale, lower recruitment costs, and more flexible rostering. There's less absenteeism if workers can take their did or elderly parent to the doctor, instead of having to take a whole day off.
For employees, the befefits are less stress and guilt, and more freedom to deal with family issues.
SOME WORK OPTIONS THAT COULD WORK:
- Permanent part-time work.
- Career break scheme - employees take leave without pay while they're raising children, studying or whatever. They keep in touch with work through newsletters or casual work. This encourages them to return to the same company.
- Company Childcare service - sponsored childare places at a company or community creche; referral services; school vacation care programs.
- Special family leave/carer's leave - leave to care for sick family members.
- Home-based work - either short or long-term.
It doesn't matter how big or small the company, family-friendly policies can and do work!
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