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Returning to work

(9 Posts)
Cabawill Mon 10-Aug-15 16:13:08

Urrrgh, I really was hoping I wouldn't have to be asking for advice about this but here I am.
We were matched with our DS (6) and DD (4) in January. DD will start Reception in September. I work for a huge company who pride themselves on being "for the staff" and who do have a very generous maternity/paternity/adoption policy. Lots of people in other areas of the business work part time and/or set shifts.

I have just heard back from my Line Manager informing me my application for flexible working has been declined. I currently work rotating early and late shifts including 3 weekends in 5 with different week days off on the weeks I work weekends. I have asked to reduce my days by 1 and for static shifts 2 earlies and 2 lates (including one weekend day every week.) By doing this I thought it fairest for all the team and it would suit me well.

He's basically saying that he can't get anyone to cover my role just one day a week and that it's come back as normal or not at all.

I love my job, I really don't want to leave (I could afford to at a push) but my children can't cope with me being out of the house before they wake up or not home until 11pm on odd days all over the place either.

TeamAcorn Mon 10-Aug-15 17:22:47

I've got a friend on maternity leave whose just been told same..its all or nothing. There's not much you can do I think. However, he says he can't cover your role 1 day a week, so if you go to 2.5 could he then get someone else to cover 2.5? Better than no job at all???

Cabawill Mon 10-Aug-15 19:52:38

That's what I've just been discussing with my DH acorn Worth an ask.

TeamAcorn Mon 10-Aug-15 19:56:17

No harm in asking as they always say ;)

JamHoneyMarmite Mon 10-Aug-15 20:42:17

I can see that finding cover for one day per week would be difficult for an employer. I definitely think it's worth sitting down together and saying, OK, how can we make this work? If they are as employee-friendly as they claim, hopefully they would be willing to hear why you need to find a consistent part-time solution to support your DC's needs, and to help you work out a plan that suits everyone.

Could you afford, for example, to take the two earlies and one weekend day only (it strikes me that the remainder would be a more attractive role to try and recruit to)?

One other thing to explore might be whether they would be willing to give you a much-reduced working pattern for a year and then review it? It is still pretty early days in settling your new family, and it's possible things might feel different in 12 months...

StaceyAndTracey Mon 10-Aug-15 20:48:37

I have nothing useful to say except " bastard big company " .

WereJamming Mon 10-Aug-15 21:02:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Cabawill Mon 10-Aug-15 22:43:15

Thank you all for the responses and advice. My immediate boss has always been "I can't lose you and I'll do whatever it takes to keep you" since I very first told him about wanting to adopt (not blowing my own trumpet, just explaining why it's come as such a shock)

I asked about doing the 5 days and fixing the hours. He's said that that can be done through consultation with him, HR and the rest of the team. I was a bit hmm at the fact that the 4 other people in my roster get a say about what shifts I might be "allowed" to work. I know the only way I think they'd agree is to give me lates every day and make it over a weekend. That's going to mean never spending a day as a family and not putting my monsters to bed 5 days a week. sad I just couldn't do it.

I think going forward my options are either job share or at least seeing what days/hours I might be able to fix and going back 5 days.

I might have to throw in a bit about what a massive massive part routine plays in our lives- it really does make a HUGE difference (holidays have been a huge roller coaster for us so far)

Tangerineandturquoise Tue 11-Aug-15 11:12:54

Companies change-people change and policies change, and I know that from experience, which is why I did not return to work-but had I done my advice would be,

The main thing is that you do what is right for you-and the family unit, my experience with DS is that the end of the day, from end of school onwards, is more important to him emotionally than the start, so if I had to build in a working day routine I would try to accommodate for that, especially if someone else was at home for the mornings.
If you need to work one week-end day, I would look to going for Saturdays, everyone gets a day together before the week starts again- could your OH do the weekly shop for Saturday- or even opt for Saturday delivery, then all of the treats and special food are there for the family day on Sunday.
But both you and your OH will also need down time-everyone needs downtime, so I would suggest booking space into your planning for that.

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