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Applying for other jobs while on mat leave

(9 Posts)
ThreeBecameFour Sun 09-Mar-14 14:10:27

I am currently on maternity leave but plan to return to work in May or June (at 9 or 10 months rather than taking a full year). I have been in my current role for 5 years (bar 18 months for 2 maternity leaves) This is my second and last maternity leave. I have seen my dream job being advertised and I am applying for it, though it is full time. My commute would be 30 mins max each way which would make a huge difference to our quality of life. I would be willing to cut short my maternity leave to get it as it is local and something I have been looking for a few years. I have to try to get an interview at least!
I am at the start of discussion around flexible working with my current employer to go back May/June. I have requested to go back 4 days a week and possibly one day from home due to my 3 hour a day commute. If I don't go back to my current employer I don't need to repay the additional maternity pay. I am loyal to them, but they were not particularly flexible after my first maternity leave. From a career advancement situation I have nowhere to go there. The commute is the killer, I have made this part of my flexible working application.
So hypothetically....
Do I need to disclose at interview that I am on maternity leave if I am lucky enough to get an interview for my dream job?
Do I need to be honest with my current employer and say that if the flexible working application isn't accepted this time around I may need to look elsewhere so they know they may lose me?
If I got offered a job after I agree a flexi working arrangement and want to resign before going back am I liable for anything?
Have you disclosed maternity leave on your CV? I am technically employed so I haven't mentioned anything on my application. Should I have?
Any advice much appreciated.

williaminajetfighter Mon 10-Mar-14 00:36:51

You dint have to tell potential employers that you're on mat leave but it may be sensible to do so if you get the job. Just good for transparency.

Check your contract. If you don't return to your role you may be obliged to pay back some of your maternity pay --- that's the case for me!

CountBapula Mon 10-Mar-14 01:08:15

I applied for - and got - my dream job while I was on maternity leave.

I was honest with them about it from the beginning.

I'd already agreed a flexible working arrangement with my employer so I just asked them in the interview whether they'd be prepared to match it, and they did (to be fair, it was a 9-day fortnight so nothing too drastic).

I'm so glad I went for it. I absolutely love it and have had 2.5 brilliant years there (now on mat leave with DC2). My old job involved very long hours and a psycho boss and I dread to think how I would have coped there with a baby/young toddler. Dream job is flexible and the people lovely and understanding.

Best decision I ever made.

ThreeBecameFour Mon 10-Mar-14 08:10:10

CountBapula - how did you tell you employer you were leaving even though you had agreed flexible working? How did it go down?

WoodBurnerBabe Mon 10-Mar-14 08:31:43

I did exactly this last year - my dream job came up while I was on mat leave, albeit near the end. I'd already had return to work meetings with my employer, talked about projects I was going to get involved with and put childcare arrangments in place. I was already working part time, so I hadn't had that discussion as I was returning on the same hours as previous.

I was completely upfront with the prospective employer that I was on mat leave and what my proposed return to work date was (which was only 6 weeks after I applied for the job, so not too much of an issue), and I included my current working hours in my covering letter with a note saying that this is what I was hoping for but that I was flexible and open to discussion about what would suit the business best.

I got a phone call offering me an interview about 3 hours after I sent the email in. With holiday and other issues it was 3 weeks before I was interviewed, and it went brilliantly. They didn't want to accept the pattern I was working, so we agreed a new one, which was fine. Unfortunately, due to timings, I actually had to return to my old job to work my notice and the way things worked out I had been back 1 week when I got a formal offer through. To say they were unhappy was an understatement, but I worked my 4 weeks notice and have now been in my new job 4 months and it is great.

Just be open and hopefully it will go well!

CountBapula Mon 10-Mar-14 16:51:48

Three it didn't go down very well at all - I'd agreed a back to work date and my boss had announced my return to the whole department the day before I got the rival job offer blush

I had to tell him over the phone as I had nobody to look after DS if I went in. He wasn't happy but tbh there wasn't much he could do about it. Also, he had basically made my life a misery while I was working for him, and was particularly unsupportive and twattish while I was pregnant, so I didn't feel too guilty.

He decided there was no point me working my notice, so they ended my employment there and then. I did have to go into the office to return my laptop, security pass etc (I had to take DS with me) and my boss pretty much refused to speak to me so that was it, really hmm

No regrets whatsoever.

ThreeBecameFour Tue 11-Mar-14 19:13:27

Interesting and encouraging...Deadline for my dream job application is 23rd. We'll see what happens....though I have already begun working there in my head! Must get a grip! Not often I feel like this about a working situation ;-)

maggiethemagpie Thu 20-Mar-14 16:40:09

I'm in this situation, just got a new job whilst I'm on mat leave, the new job is part time so much better hours for me. My old job was relocated when I was pregnant, and to remain in employment/retain maternity benefits and pay I told them I'd relocate after my mat that I've found something else obviously I won't be. I emailed them a resignation letter yesterday - not heard a dicky bird back yet but not much they can do. I don't feel guilty as they were going to make me redundant when I was five months pregnant, I would have lost mat pay/car/bonus/pension etc, so I had to look after number 1. Its a huge national company, so not like they are really going to lose out financially just because of one person.

I didn't tell my new employer I was on mat leave, as I didn't think I needed to and didn't want it to affect my chances, In the end I got down to the final two and whilst it may not have made any difference, it could have enticed them to pick the other person had they known. apparantly it was quite a close call between me and the other person anyway.

It'll be tough going from not working for the past 10 months to a new job, but I'm also looking forward to going back to the world of work, and delighted i managed to get something part time which is not very common in my line of work.

Eastie77 Thu 20-Mar-14 21:54:37

I am coming to the end of Mat Leave (returning to work in April) but saw a dream job advertised a couple of days ago and applied. I received e-mail today from the employer asking about salary expectations etc so am hoping I at least get an interview. I'm not especially unhappy in my current role but my manager has made it clear my promotion prospects are quite limited for now - she mentioned it was 'possible' I'd be promoted in a year or two and hinted it would have been sooner if I hadn't got pregnant - and I won't feel bad about leaving if I do get the job!

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