20% of advertising and media staff do not feel supported with parenting responsibilities

Diana Tickell

One-fifth (20%) of employee respondents in the advertising and media industry do not feel that their employer supports them in balancing work and parental responsibilities, according to research by the National Advertising Benevolent Society (NABS).

Its survey of 597 employees in the advertising and media industry also found that almost two-thirds (60%) of respondents know of someone in the sector who has left their role because of the pressures that come with being a working parent.

The research also found:

  • A third (33%) of respondents feel supported to some extent in balancing their working and parental responsibilities, and 45% feel supported to some extent.
  • 25% of employees who are fathers do not feel their employer supports them in balancing work and parental responsibilities, compared to 16% of respondents who are mothers.
  • 42% of employees who are mothers have been made to feel uncomfortable about their parenting responsibilities by their employer or colleagues, compared to 21% of fathers.
  • Less than one in five (16%) of respondents work flexibly.
  • Almost three-quarters (73%) of respondents believe they are not spending enough time with their children.
  • 24% of respondents cite a lack of flexibility as the biggest pressure they face as a working parent, 45% name fatigue and 48% cite managing workloads.

Diana Tickell (pictured), chief executive officer at NABS, said: “Working parents form an integral part of every business, whether in the advertising industry, in small- and medium-sized enterprises or in large organisations. But it seems we have yet to truly appreciate the value that working parents can bring and find the best ways of supporting them.

“The UK needs to be better at adopting flexible-working practices, training line managers to deal with parents effectively, and acknowledging the cultural and generational changes in parenting roles. We have to manage the fact that many mothers are choosing to work more and fathers want to become more involved in parenting.

“We want to see culture-changing initiatives that benefit parents and businesses alike, such as creating working-parent communities.”