Was going to name change but details are pretty much outing anyway.
I'm an account manager for a wholesale company. I'm currently on mat leave, dd is a month old,
I work in a team of 7, 3 of us are currently on mat leave, and there's two people in to cover us.
Yesterday there was an emergency meeting, and those on maternity leave had to dial in to a conference call.
The outcome of the call is that the powers of be are completely changing our job roles - rather than account managers, we will now be sales support ops and rather than have our own accounts, we are basically back office support for field sales reps. It's a step down, however they want to dress it up - our salary remains the same, but as we are no longer sakes we don't have the opportunity to earn bonus, something that really supplemented my income.
As there's 7 roles but 9 potential employees, we have been offered redundancy. I haven't had the paperwork yet, but heard the rough figure, which I obviously can't disclose. It's not a huge amount but works out to roughly 5:6 months wages.
I'm furious about the whole thing. I applied for a job as account manager NOT a customer service/admin role. If I didn't have dd, my choice would be easy, but now I have her I'm not sure what to do.
I wanted to return to my role to ease myself back in after maternity - my confidence is knocked and the thought of applying and going to a completely new job with new people is daunting.
Plus I've been at my job for 3 years- what's the job market currently like? Would I find another role easily? Would I even be considered over other candidates after having 9 months out of work?
Has anyone else experienced anything like this? Help!
Sorry you're going through this. Hopefully someone else better qualified will be able to comment as to whether this is legal whilst you're on maternity leave. My gut instinct is that it's not legal as the redaction of the bonus may be enough to challenge that it's not a "like for like post".
So firstly, I'd get some legal advice.
Secondly, do you have a partner? What is their income/job security like? Could they support the whole family if you toon redundancy and looked for a similar role?
Oh, and I recruit frequently and would think nothing of a 9 month gap in work due to maternity. Just state the reason clearly in your covering letter/application
Firstly, you are entitled to return to a job in the same t&cs. Is the bonus in your contract?
Secondly, you say 9 people are being considered for 7 roles. The two people providing maternity cover - how long have they been employed by the company for? Are the just maternity cover? By law employers are not allowed to give your job to your maternity cover and as you are on maternity leave you are protected and one of the roles should be ring fenced for you. Are you in a union? Maternity Action or acas will be able to advise you.
You could of course use this as an opportunity to move onto other things, especially if this is a job that you don't want to return to. As for the "gap", you are still employed up until you leave the company so the gap may not end up being that large and it's fine to address it in your application. I would never not consider someone because they had been on mat leave - morally, because I want to consider good applicants and because it's the law!
@marceline - yes, I did wonder on exactly how legal this is too my husband works and we are ok for the time being. He's made no secret that he'd love me to be a sahm, mainly so we could save on childcare, but I like working, and frankly don't think I have it in me to be a sahm
Without wanting to go into loads of potentially irrelevant legal stuff on here, I think it may be worth talking to ACAS. If you want to stay in your current (albeit changed) job. They'll be able to give you more specific and confidential advice.
It's hard to say how competitive it is out there. Where I am it's bloody awful, but it may be less so where you are.
Would the redundancy start now or at the end of your maternity leave?
If you want another AM role you should move. Once you stay in a cust ops role your future career prospects would be limited to that
Agree with uppity. 5-6 months pay is plenty of time to find another job too. You don't need to list maternity leave on your CV anyway, you were still an employee during that time. If they asked you outright you would need to tell them, but honestly no-one will bat an eyelid at 9 months maternity leave.. it's a completely explainable gap.
Also they surely have to pay you all your maternity pay then start the redundancy?
Do you get enhanced maternity pay? If you can secure that and 6 months salary as redundancy pay then that sounds like very attractive option to me. Especially if the alternative is going back to a job you don't want, pays less and will look worse on your CV than a short break.
You don't disclose your maternity on any application. You are employed by the company during that period, even if you're not working, so there's no gap.
I'd probably take the redundancy. You could stay 'employed' for the max year to accrue annual leave whilst job hunting. Would part time working be something you'd consider? If so, the redundancy would go further.
Your company HAS to offer you the role as you are on maternity leave, they cannot make you interview for it.
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