With the summer holidays upon us, you may currently find yourself juggling family life with the demands of a job. It can be a challenge to make it through the long school break, balancing your work commitments with family life. But we at Pure might just be able to help!
Every mum and dad has their own way of handling the school holiday challenge, but here are a few more ideas to add to your box of tricks.
1. Request flexible working hours
At the end of June the government extended the right to request flexible working hours. Formerly only available to people who are carers and those with childcare responsibilities, others can now put in a request to their employers to flex their hours. So, not only can you request flexible working hours, but if one of your relatives is helping with childcare, they can also request the same of their employer. But remember, it’s not guaranteed that you’ll get it – it ultimately comes down to their boss’ decision.
2. Informal flexible working
If your employer is already letting you flex your hours or do a job share, then continue this conversation throughout the year so you can make holiday arrangements accordingly. Ask if you can start work extra early and finish early so you can make the most of those warm long afternoons and light evenings with your little ones.
3. Use your TOIL
If you have accrued lots of time off in lieu (TOIL), you could ‘cash it in’ this summer. As with annual leave, you’ll probably need to schedule it in advance, but if your workplace is quieter than usual, now is the ideal time to use it.
4. Delegate tasks at work
Do you have colleagues happy to help during the school holidays by sharing some of your tasks? If their workload is lighter than at other times of year, it’s worth asking if they would mind looking after some of the more straightforward jobs when you’re not there. This can free you up to be with your family. But remember to be ready to support your colleagues in return one day.
5. Plug into your parent network
It’s highly likely the other parents in your community are also struggling so it might be an idea to group together and share childcare. If children can spend the day with different parents on a rotation basis, this could save everyone the headache of making other arrangements.
6. Summer clubs for kids
How about booking places on a summer club? It could provide your children with the perfect break from the usual school environment. Many local clubs offer fantastic activities such as circus skills workshops, cinema trips, picnics and seaside visits. Children get to spend a few hours a day making new friends, having fun and even learning new skills..
Since many businesses are becoming more and more flexible and supportive, we hope that the long school break will become less stressful as time goes by. In the meantime, we hope our list of ideas helps make summer fun for the whole family!
Gill is a founding Director of Pure and has worked in recruitment since 1988, including eight years of specialist recruitment experience within an international specialist recruitment company and five years working within financial services recruitment in Sydney, Australia. Gill’s approach is to provide clients and candidates with the highest quality of service. She has a consultative style which has led to her building long-term relationships with both clients and candidates.