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Maternity leave

(12 Posts)
JenniferR Wed 02-Mar-11 18:28:13

Hi everyone

Just wondered if anyone had any advice/tips on maternity leave handover etc. Everyone seems to be giving me contradicting advice.

I am due to finish for maternity leave in a couple of months. I really like my current job and intend to return after 6-8 months.

My job's now advertised and feel quite nervous about it. Things going through my mind like- will my replacement be preferred, will they do a better job, will they want to keep them on. I know that this probably sounds stupid given the joy having a baby will bring but I've had some really tough jobs and this is the first one in a long time that I really like.

I need to start organising my handover and wondered if any of you had any tips on this. Some people say do a really good handover, others say do the basics and let the replacement work things out. Not sure what approach to take. If I do a really good handover I'm worried I'll get no credit for it and they will make out that it's all their work, however it's not in my nature to do things badly so wouldn't do a bad handover either.

Just wondered if anyone had any tips/advice to help alleviate this anxiety I'm feeling. Just want to be able to go back to my job and feel a part of the team again etc- know that lots of mums to be feel this way


PS- my main priority is of course baby but with mortgage to pay etc job is important!

happycamel Wed 02-Mar-11 19:08:23

I'm doing my handover at the moment. I totally understand your worries.

I'm an accountant so my approach has been to demonstrate what I do on my computer with my temp watching. They're still setting her up with her access to the finance system and I've used the "compliance" excuse not to let her use mine.

This means she sees everything but unless she makes fab notes (and I haven't seen her make many at all) it all go to hell in a handbasket next month end. This is definitely my last month end at work so there are no second chances.

I figure this gives her a fair chance without, as you say, not getting any credit for the fab job I do.

Legally they have to offer you a job (unless you're made redundant due to restructuring, they can't make your redundant just for being on ML. They don't legally have to offer you your old job back, just an "equivalent" one but most companies will and will just recruit a temp. If you're known to enjoy and be good at your job I can't see why they wouldn't want you back. Also remember that you're allowed 10 Keeping In Touch days without affecting your SMP.

PrincessScrumpy Wed 02-Mar-11 19:38:53

When I did my hand over I had one week as my boss failed to get organised and give us the 4 weeks I was promised. There were lots of elements to the job and the team I managed were all new employees from a 6 month period so they were still being trained (they were trainees and it takes about 2 years to train up). It was a bit of a nightmare.

I was terrified they would want to keep her and not want me back. However, turns out she was rubbish and one of the other managers had to hold her hand all the time. I only founf that out when the manager tried to do that with me on my return and I was confused as I had completed the work she was asking for - she was surprised by this and it dawned on her how good I was. My boss made comments about my cover over a few months until one day I said, was she really bad? And he told me the whole story and how pleased they were for me to come back.

On the plus side, it's the reason I got them to agree to a cut in hours on the same management level - they said we want you full time, but if that's what we have to do to keep you then ok. Hurrah - very happy she was rubbish though!

trixie123 Wed 02-Mar-11 20:44:48

they can't keep her and not have you back no matter how fabulous she is. They can keep her as well as you but they HAVE to offer you your old job back or else they are breaking the law. They cannot make you redundant and then hire someone to do the same job within a fairly longish period of time. Do your best with the handover - it will be appreciated and what WILL be noticed is if you don't do it well and the replacement cocks up a lot and costs everyone time / money etc. She's new and can't be expected to know the ropes unless you show her

JenniferR Thu 03-Mar-11 11:18:50

Hi everyone

Thank you for all of your messages- really appreciate this. I'm just going to do what I can and then the rest will just have to be case of wait and see what happens!

All the best happycamel with your handover and arrival of baby.


HappyHugs Thu 03-Mar-11 16:49:02

I did a really thorough handover with a very organised replacement for my first baby. She was excellent but they still took me back and kept her too! In fact I got promoted and she and I share a lot of work and she's still there covering my work as I leave to have number 3. It can work really well so don't worry too much and good luck with your baby!

bumperella Thu 03-Mar-11 17:18:00

I'd do the best handover you can, and if at all possible document what you've shown your replacement; checklists and procedures files, templates, whatever you can. This will really help your replacement AND make it clear how much effort and work you've put in to the handover.
But if you do a rubbish handover then when you come back everything will be a mess, and you will look either mean spirited or inept, or both.

KerryK2 Thu 15-Sep-11 12:32:12

Hi - I am just starting to think about planning a handover and what will happen when I'm on maternity leave for 9 months (leaving in Jan 2012). I work as a PA and think that by doing a really good, comprehensive handover it can only reflect positively on you and assist your cover and the team. I also plan to keep in touch with my boss and team members now and again whilst i'm off so that they don't forget me!! Good luck... smile

licoriceGreen Thu 15-Sep-11 12:40:56

I did the best handover I could, wrote notes on every aspect of my job and shared them with my boss so that she knew that I really cared about the role and making sure it was properly covered so that I can pick t back up when I came back. If you do a poor handover you look like you don't care or worse you didn't know what you were doing, also it's very unfair on your replacement. they have to give you a job when you go back you might as well be nice.

AlpinePony Thu 15-Sep-11 13:24:40

Wow! I am really shocked (and saddened) by those of you whom in paranoia-filled hatred would deliberately sabotage the work of someone jsut trying to put food on the table during your ml. sad

As licorice points out, if you do a shabby handover you'll make yourself look shit, not the temp.

Africagirl1 Thu 15-Sep-11 14:03:17

I totally understand how vulnerable this can make one feel. My job is v important to me and when I went on maternity leave last time felt terrible (I didnt do a very good handover as it turned out as DS was 5 weeks early). I see it like this: for me it was like telling a woman she could move in with your husband, sleep in his bed, spend his money, hang out with your friends for a few months...

notlettingthefearshow Thu 15-Sep-11 14:29:32

I would do the best handover possible, for reasons of pride and also, it will reflect badly on you if you do a shoddy job and your replacement doesn't know what he/she's doing. It wouldn't occur to me to do anything else.

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