- Untapped talent
Back to making it harder than it needs to be… So, here is the thing, there are untapped talent segments hiring managers repeatedly turn a blind eye to. The first is our ageing population – I’ve talked ad nauseam about this (see our blog), so no more on this subject today. Except as a small reminder, there are 619,000 older people (aged 65 and over) employed in the labour force, a participation rate of 15%, with a further 18,400 looking for work and more still seeking additional hours.
The next segment is our graduates, and I’ll be coming to them in the next few weeks, but today’s insider segment tip is our working mums and return to work mums, part-time or full time. You might be surprised I am bringing it up; I mean, it is 2022, but believe it or not, there is still some bias around this. Whether it be about being out of the workforce force for a number of years or the ability to juggle potential conflicting priorities, or the need to work reduced hours, today, I’d like to dispel some myths.
- Our EST10 Mums
To provide some context, currently, EST10 has 6 working mums; up until a month ago, it was 7, and one of these is the delightful Rachel, currently on maternity leave. To be entirely honest with you, I have never given this a thought or measured it until right now in writing this blog. So, with our current 6 working mums, it makes up half our workforce and 5 of those 6, work flexible or part-time hours. These ladies, like the rest of our team, are superstars. All the roles, from Talent Acquisition Manager, Recruitment Team Manager, Executive Assistant, Social Media Manager, hold high levels of responsibility, and they are always accountable.
Our working mums work as hard as the rest of the team, are highly dependable, come to work on occasions with very little sleep, but are still there, delivering and contributing. They have a high sense of empathy, care and compassion but are no walkovers. While our wonderful EST10 mums have always been caring and compassionate, maybe it’s due to the more developed right side of their brain? Their boundaries are great; they deliver the toughest messages, but with understanding, strength, and integrity. They deal with the trickiest of situations and always have our business at the heart of all their actions and decisions. At Christmas parties or any parties for that matter, the mums at EST10 are the last to leave!
- Untapped skills
Prepandemic it is estimated mums worked on average 77 hours per week: 20 hours paid work, 30 hours household work and 27 hours childcare. After months of homeschooling and working from home, what would these figures look like now? Mums, in my experience are the ultimate jugglers managing conflicting priorities and not dropping the ball. Maybe I am incredibly fortunate to have won the lotto with the mums I work with, but I think every environment could benefit from a contingent of working mums! There are around 7 million mums in Australia (women with children under 18). Consider the wealth of experience, knowledge and skills we miss out on when we overlook them. And it happens! It has been shown workplaces with increased gender diversity have improved retention, better reputations, increased profitability and greater productivity. More of that please!
Because we turn a blind eye to what is in front of us, more and more women are making the move to self-employment. Over the past 20 years, there has been a 46% increase in the number of women operating businesses with mothers making up 81% of women operators. Many of these women start their businesses out of necessity due to difficulty finding flexible work. Starting a business takes innovation, determination, resilience-what incredible skills to have within your business. What have we been missing out on?
- Are your eyes open?
The point of this blog is to open our eyes and hearts to what might work, even if we thought it was a no before. If your vacancy is a full-time position and you have a potential hire who can only commit 3 or 4 days-consider them; they may be your best hire yet. And it is not just about working mums or return to work mums; it’s about any bias, for we all have it. Instead of saying no as an automatic reflex, perhaps consider a maybe and exploratory chat or a yes!
And one last thing, not to brag about my prediction skills or being ahead of the curve like my cry out 5 years ago for our talent shortage, but at EST10, we have been working remotely for 8 plus years. We currently have someone in the U.K. (a mum of 2 and 2 guinea pigs), Perth and Chicago. In fact, it was so normal to me that I didn’t even consider we were working remote until COVID occurred, and it was all the ‘talk’. For me working with talent and the potential of people has been instinctive and natural. So, trust me when I say to tap into our ageing population, our graduates and our delightful working mums and return to work mums. Hire them.
“The eye sees only what the mind is prepared to comprehend.” – Robert Davies, Tempest-Tost