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Applying for jobs after mat leave(7 Posts)
Just wondered how people get part time jobs on returning from maternity leave. I'm requesting a reduction to part time on my return but not hopeful due to my job role.
I've been looking for a new job just in general but they all say 'full time position'. What do I do? Can I only apply to jobs that state 'part time' or can I apply to the full time ones and if I get offered one ask if I can do it part time?/should i mention it at interview?
Never been in this situation before, I returned to my job full time after my first maternity leave (no choice) and I hated it and I def don't want to and can't afford childcare costs for two in nursery.
I'm reluctant to just give up my job as I'm not sure about how easy it will be to get a job in 4 years time when youngest starts school.
Any advice much appreciated!
It's a really tricky one isn't it. I was made redundant on maternity leave and had to go looking. I was lucky to get a 4 day role, which was originally advertised as full time. I went for the first interview which went well and when I was invited back for a second I told the recruiter I'd ideally want 4 days. By then they were interested in me, but it still took a bit of negotiating when they offered. I think it helped that the job was a step sideways for me so they knew they were getting good value for money. It also helped that I wasn't desperate for the job, so could negotiate confidently.
My advice would be to go for full time jobs as well as part time and let them know after they've meet you. Definitely don't spring it on them at offer stage. I'm in HR and we'd see that as a bit sly, damaging trust, which might put us off looking for solutions to make it work.
If I am considering applying for a job that doesn't mention the option of part time work, I would ring the employer and ask as sometimes it's possible for two candidates to job share. I wouldn't wait until the interview to mention it as there
mucht be no chance whatsoever of facilitating it, in which case I think employers get pissy about you wasting their time.
Many women accept a full time job, then request pt hours after a year or so. It seems to be the easiest way, as the organisation already knows you and wants to retain you by then.
Yes of course you can apply for FT jobs. I've done this a few times, and said at interview I would only consider part time so not to make me an offer otherwise. Mostly successfully, although on one occasion it was FT or nada. Fair enough, we just weren't able to agree mutually satisfactory terms.
pt is harder to find but there are roles out there. are you registered with agencies. I always made it clear I would only take part time and it worked.
check also local authority jobs. they usually have a fair bit of part time roles.
my last part time job was through a friend. I had contacted all friends etc. and asked them to look out for roles where they work and it did the trick.
Often part-time or flexible work is easier to find by approaching companies directly, so that they have you already in mind when thinking about a new role, rather than you being just one of many in a pile of applicants.
Very few decent part-time roles are advertised (actually the statistics also show that very few roles are advertised, including full-time!), so you are better off thinking about companies that you'd like to work for and seeing if you can find a way in. There are good ways to approach companies - I often recommend trying to meet with people in relevant roles and asking them about their career and the company/industry rather than asking for a job.
If you do decide to take a longer family break, I would just suggest that you look for a voluntary or paid role without a big time commitment (as a charity Trustee or Treasurer for example), which will help you to keep your work confidence up and give you some recent work experience (in the loose sense) for your CV and to talk about when you are ready to look for your next job.
Good luck! Kath @ Runneth London
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