27 September 2018 | Marino Donati
Fifty-three per cent of respondents in a survey of working parents say they feel unfairly judged by managers and colleagues for trying to balance their work and family commitments.
A poll by HR software provider www.CIPHR.com of 1,400 working parents shows that 75 per cent of them suffer stress and anxiety trying to manage their work-life balance.
Two-fifths (40 per cent) say they feel women bosses are more understanding and supportive of their needs, but just 10 per cent reckon men are most sympathetic.
The survey also shows that 61 per cent of respondents think their employers do a good job of supporting working parents, but only 55 per cent of them admit they have a flexible working arrangement in place.
Claire Williams, head of people at www.CIPHR.com, said: "While this study confirms that the majority of employers are doing a good job of helping their staff balance their professional and family lives, there is still significant room for improvement. There also seems to be an uncomfortably wide gender gap between perceived supportive managers, which is concerning."
The study also finds that more senior managers who had greater childcare resources of their own are perceived as far less understanding about their employees' work-life balance.
Managers and colleagues with their own children are much more supportive of their flexible working needs, according to the survey.
Workers with two children feel the most judged by managers and colleagues and are also most likely to report feeling stressed and anxious about balancing home and work.
Williams said: "It's clear from this study there is a greater need for understanding and acceptance of the issues staff with young families face, especially by colleagues and managers who do not face these problems themselves.
She added: "Flexible working is obviously key to many successful employee and employer relationships, but perhaps the issue of presenteeism needs to be addressed for working parents, too."