I am a big fan of returnships. It is perhaps not a name I would have chosen, but tapping into the huge resource of returning to work mums has been a huge help to my own business.
This article by Antonia Welch in the CIPR's Influence magazine is well worth a read. Antonia has worked with us at Coast for the past 18 months.
The key to making returnships work is flexibility. We don't need people in the office eight hours a day, five days a week. We don't need our staff in front of clients every day either.
What we do need is talented and committed people that understand our sector - in our case professional services and real estate - and returning to work mums can deliver that in spades.
Many thanks Antonia for this article, and for your continued contributions.
A new report published by an all-party parliamentary group has recommended that every workplace with 250+ employers should have a policy on returnships to help women resume their careers after an extended break. While it is encouraging that larger businesses are being urged to consider the merits of a returnship programme, the PR industry is arguably a sector which should take particular note of the recommendations. While there is no shortage of women in PR, it is well known that the numbers diminish up the corporate ladder with many women, typically in their thirties, leaving the industry to have children. By board level, the numbers of men vastly outweigh their female counterparts.