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Flexible Industries Mums Returning To Work

Destination Retail

We bet that many of you, when you were children, loved playing at shops. We also bet that it’s something your children do and love too.

So why not take the ‘playing’ back into the real world?

We’ve given it some thought and here are our top reasons why a career in retail is a great idea.

Discount
As shopaholics, this is of course the biggest advantage in our eyes! With fashion retailers offering up to 75 per cent discount for uniform purchases and on average 20 per cent staff discount, if nothing else, it’s a great way to refresh your wardrobe.

Although keeping your wardrobe updated is a perk, working in a supermarket, electrical store or even a furniture retailer can all help make a dent in those large family expenses, from the weekly shop to a new oven or sofa.

Variety is the spice of life
The world of retail is varied and exciting. From large, multi-national retailers to bijou independent boutiques, there’s something for everyone – so don’t be scared!

If you’re looking for opportunities that mean progression, the larger stores are for you. Want to feel part of a family? Why not look for positions within smaller chains or independent shops?

The skills that you develop through working in a big store can help if you fancy a change to a smaller one, so add a bit of variety to find where you fit best.

It’s not all about selling!
We all know, the ultimate aim of a shop is to sell. But they do a lot more than just that!

While sales roles are notorious for their targets and the particular set of personal characteristics needed, they need supporting. Positions such as cashiers, back office staff and customer service team members – plus many more – all work hard to keep the retail machine turning.

It’s not always about the customers
While the customer may always be right, the roles that involve them might not always be right for you.

Shelf stacking, delivery and warehouse management and maintenance roles are all retail based but very rarely involve interaction with customers – something to consider if you’re of a slightly shyer disposition!

Retail offers everything you could need; progression, stability, friendship, responsibility and variety. Not only for those starting out at 16, this is an industry for every age and gender to really flourish.

Find our latest RETAIL roles HERE.

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Flexible Industries Mums Returning To Work

Temporary work, permanent Wonderwoman

Routines are hard to break. Sometimes, we just need a little help getting back to the reality of work after a break to have our little angels, but it can be a horrifying prospect.

With Christmas just around the corner (sorry, we went there), there are ample temporary positions out there that could help you get back in the swing of working life. Here’s how…

Habit forming
Being away from the workplace can mean your routine has gone completely. Not getting up at the same time, staying up late, skipping meals – even eating too often! This can all make it difficult to get back into the swing of things.
By having an employer relying on your punctuality, dedication and hard work, there is an incentive to get back to a schedule without too much of a shock to the system.

Trying to push yourself straight into a full-time job may over-exert your potential, remember to look after yourself, too!

Skill developing
If you’ve been away from work for a number of years, we hate to tell you this but technology has moved on. With add-ons, social media and even CRM systems changing seemingly overnight, what you once knew could be obsolete.
But worry not! A temporary position – whether in an office, shop or café – requires your use of technology throughout the day which will see you brushing up on your IT skills in no time.

Adult talking
Mummies, we all know what happens when we don’t interact with other adults (away from our children) regularly. Not only do we adopt a permanent baby voice, the thought of being around adults without the comfort-blanket topic of our offspring can be incredibly daunting.
If you’re thinking of going back to work, this can be a major cause of anxiety, but don’t run before you can walk.
Taking part-time, temporary work can help you reintegrate into a workforce. Maybe the talk won’t be about projections or spreadsheets, but being around a team with common goals can help you reidentify yourself; the non-child version. Plus, it gives you a new set of friends to hit the town with…IF you can get a babysitter!

Smiling service
Imagine a world with people asking things of your without screaming bloody murder when it’s not available or hanging on to your trouser leg until you give in. It exists!
A temporary role within retail gives you the opportunity to brush up on your service with a smile. Although it might not always be easy (we’re thinking 5:30am at the Next sale!), it will force you to deal with situations that you find you can solve with a smile and those negotiation skills you’ve been working on since your children could feed themselves.

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Mums Returning To Work

How to approach writing a CV when you’ve had a career break

So you’ve taken a career break to be a full-time parent, but your child has grown up all too quickly and it’s time to return to work. The trouble is, the last role you held was years ago – how on earth can you frame the gap on your CV so that it looks appealing to recruiters?

Well, your approach depends on a lot of variables, including how long you’ve been away from the workplace, the type of role you’re applying for and what else you’ve done while you’ve been away.

Decide what you’re aiming for
Firstly, you need to have a clear idea of the job you want – that way, you can tailor your CV to demonstrate the skills relevant to that role. There’s no benefit in coming across as a Jack of all trades but master of none. Armed with your list of skills, think about when you last used them and what the outcome was.

Don’t waffle about your parenting skills
Obviously the more recently you’ve used the skills, the more weight they hold – but this is where your timeline is critical. If you want to show excellent negotiation skills on your CV, a recruiter probably doesn’t want to know about how you persuaded your toddler to use the blue bowl rather than the red bowl last week. A CV entirely focused on your successes in raising your child, lovely though she undoubtedly is, is unlikely to appeal.

Write a chronological CV
If you decide that skills you gained since leaving the office aren’t relevant to your new career direction, that’s fine! Simply write a chronological CV as usual, but instead of detailing your current job, state that you’ve been on a career break and give the dates. This approach is probably best suited to short or mid-length gaps. There’s no shame in being a parent, so you can even state the reason for the gap, to save the recruiter from jumping to incorrect conclusions about unemployment, redundancy, prison…

Identify new skills
Depending on your target role, you may find it beneficial to highlight skills or qualifications gained whilst away from the workplace – maybe you influenced change at school by representing the PTA, maybe you developed leadership skills whilst running a playgroup or maybe you planned events for a community organisation. Think carefully about all the little things you’ve done in between the parenting – you may be surprised at what you’ve achieved. If you’ve acquired or developed any such skills whilst on a career break, by all means illustrate them on your CV alongside some positive outcomes.

For example:

Career break to raise a family April 2016 – date
• Planned, organised and managed a successful community event to raise funds for victims of an earthquake, generating £10,000
• Led a local playgroup, doubling membership by arranging visits from photographers, crafters and musicians

Write a skills-based CV
Many roles, however would benefit from a more professionally-focused CV. For longer career breaks, a skills-based CV could be more appropriate. To create a skills-based CV, identify the skills you wish to highlight and give bulleted examples of how you’ve previously used each of them – preferably with quantifiable results against each one. This eliminates the need for including dates which could make your skills look outdated. You will still need to give a chronological summary of your career, but this can be as simple as Job Title / Employer Name / Dates on the second page.

For example:

Operations management
• Wrote operating procedures and drove compliance, resulting in a 50% increase in productivity
• Developed and implemented operations strategies which reduced costs by £100,000

Leadership
• Managed teams of up to 100 staff, motivating them to improve performance and achieve KPIs
• Turned around an underperforming team by providing training and listening to staff concerns

Be selective with dates
If your career break has been relatively short, remember that you’re likely to have left the office but still been technically employed for several months after the baby arrived. It’s absolutely fine to put the date that your employment officially terminated on your CV, rather than the date you actually left. Giving only the years you started and finished each role, rather than the month, is another easy way of covering short periods away from paid employment. Using these techniques means you can often avoid or minimise a career gap.

Include personal and professional development
If you’ve found the time to develop yourself during your career break, so much the better. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that only paid work is valid; there are other ways to show a recruiter your value. You might be able to add information about courses you’ve undertaken, voluntary work you’ve participated in, even interests relating to your desired career path. If you’re keen to work in IT, for example, add an Interests section and say that you enjoy fixing faults on friends’ computers. Add a Professional Development section and mention the online course you did while the baby was sleeping. Add a Voluntary Work section to highlight that you helped at the after-school computer club.

In summary
Remember, a career break is now a perfectly normal part of many careers. If you have a valid reason for being away from paid work – and full-time parenting is certainly a valid reason – employers won’t necessarily see this as a negative. What is more important is proving that you have the skills and experience to successfully perform the role they need to fill.

You may feel like you’ve been out of the workplace for ever, but just by thinking about exactly what you’ve achieved in your life and incorporating this into a CV you’re likely to give yourself the confidence boost necessary to get your job hunt off to a flying start.

If you would like to speak with our team of dedicated CV Specialists for a free 1 hour review then click HERE

If you are interested in topping up your CV with some great ‘do at your own pace’ online courses then click HERE.

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Mums Returning To Work

Back to school, back to you

It’s hard to believe that the Summer holidays are nearly over. Six weeks of picnics, beach trips, long walks, tantrums, grazed knees…you know the drill.

While the children in our lives are starting to pick out their new backpacks, a fun pencil case and of course be kitted out with new uniform they are going to grow out of by Christmas, what do you get out of it?

We think the start of the new school year can be a new start for you too! Whether you’ve taken an extended break, come back from holiday or just fancy a change, see September as a way to start afresh.

Here are a few ways we think you can kick start your new you.

Find out who it is you want to be
Sometimes the hardest part can be making a start. Do you want to change career? Do you have skills you feel are being wasted? Do you want to learn new skills?
Get a piece of paper and list your skills, your qualities and your dreams. This will lead you to discover what it is you need to work on.

Shed your skin
Obviously, we’re not talking literally, not only would that be inappropriate but also pretty messy. We mean more figuratively.
Do you often feel dowdy in your work clothes? Have you enjoyed Summer so much that office wear is horrifying? Or do you feel restricted and uninspired in your work clothes?
How you feel at work can have a massive impact on productivity – so don’t let it! There are simple changes you can make – try a different style of skirt, perhaps a colourful blouse with your pants suit or some fabulous shoes. Finding a way to show your individuality at work amongst the black and grey will not only make you feel better, but also make you stand out to seniors.

Learn something you never knew
Would knowing a foreign language help when travelling with work? How about some basic IT skills to stop you succumbing to the demon of technology? Or wanting to re-train completely? What is stopping you?!
Not only will learning new skills – whether for work or just yourself – will give you a sense of achievement as well as the possibility to meet new people.
Check out our latest training courses to see which new you is waiting right under your nose.

Mummies need new school bags too…
Why should the children have all the fun?!

Something that is always important, regardless of how you feel, is that you are not alone. We have a network of mummies ready to support and assist you with anything you need. With help from our digital mummy club, which offers mums a fantastic referral scheme (and a simple way to earn some high street vouchers before Christmas, to a listening ear (or keyboard) – there’s no shame in asking!

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Mums Returning To Work

Reflect, Refresh and Recharge

Refresh, reflect and recharge

Sometimes we just need a little push. To try a new food, to explore a new country, sometimes just to get out of bed in the morning. But often we don’t think about pushing ourselves.

The Summer, with the lighter evenings, warmer weather (theoretically) and slightly quieter workplaces due to various holidays, gives you a great opportunity to think about your skills and what you might need a little help with, as well as giving you the time to do something about it.

Thinking about training? Here are some things to think about before you get started:

Reflect

Take some time to reflect on your current skills. What do you feel are your strengths? Is there anything you’d like to know more about? Is there something you know would help you progress your career or business?

Make a list (we like a list) and prioritise.

Refresh

Do you have qualifications you’d like to update? Search for booster courses or updates that can add value to your current accreditations. This gives you a stronger standing in the marketplace and demonstrates to current and future employers that you are willing to keep up to date with the latest in your industry.

Recharge

Whether it’s a course in social media for business, customer service or negotiation skills, recharging yourself with knowledge and confidence can go a long way to getting you that job you’ve always wanted, or give you the push to start your own business.

Training doesn’t have to cost the earth or take over your life. We have a selection of courses for all budgets and lifestyles to get our mummies back into business!

Check out our range of courses at https://mummyjobs.co.uk/training

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Mums Returning To Work

Enjoying the great outdoors – without disrupting your working day

We’ve all been in a situation where we’ve come home from a day at work and realised the longest we have spent outside, is the distance from the car to the office or front door.

As we’re now heading into Summer, we thought we’d put together some ideas on how you can get that all important fresh air without disrupting your day.

Meetings
It’s easy to think that meetings should only take place in an office or boardroom and of course, some do require the equipment and privacy these venues afford. For those meetings that don’t however – take it outside!

If all you need is a pen, notepad and your colleagues, enjoy a walk in the local park or take the team to the nearest green space and sit on the grass together.

Being in the open air can boost creativity, build team relations and create a more relaxed, informal atmosphere, which can lead to more open and honest conversations.

Lunch
Who else is guilty of munching on a meal deal at their desk? It’s the easy option, but not the most hygienic. A recent infographic by Dettol demonstrates just how many germs you are sharing your lunch with.

Not only is it important to keep your meal to yourself, you need to be moving around and taking some time away from your screen.

When the weather allows, grab the nearest bench then sit and watch the world go past. You’ll feel calmer and ready to face the afternoon.

Walk it off
Incorporating exercise into your commute can not only improve your fitness, but also your mood – and your pocket!

So many of us don’t use our cars during the working day and can easily walk, jog or cycle to work.

Not only will you arrive to work feeling refreshed and awake, you’ll be doing your bit for the environment – and you don’t have to go to the gym (which we bet is inside!).

Work out
For some, the luxury of working from home or spending your days in the garden is a luxury. But for others, there are still opportunities to take your work outside.

Got a lot of calls to make? Need to brainstorm? Reading an important article? If you don’t absolutely need your computer screen, work outside! Those five minutes can make all the difference.

What is mainly important to bear in mind during your working day is that just the smallest amount of fresh air can make a huge difference to your mood, productivity and mental health. So make sure you’re getting enough of it!

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Mums Returning To Work

THE MUMMY of mummyjobs is very, very, tired.

THE MUMMY of mummyjobs has spent nearly every night of the last 2 weeks on the phone to the GoDaddy web development team in Arizona. This time it’s because she has accidentally deleted half of the Home Page (F.M.L.) and at 2am, CANNOT be arsed to try and fanny around figuring out how to get it back.

THE MUMMY of mummyjobs is aware that she has a very tricky 6am meeting with her 2 daughters in the morning that she will definitely NOT be allowed to call in sick for, or cancel and that the 3rd glass of Malbec in her hand was probably not the best idea she’s had this evening.

The clock is ticking past 2.30am… THE MUMMY of mummyjobs is now very tired (and a little tipsy), ‘GoDaddy Arizona’ has finally informed her how to fix her erroneous deletion of half the Home Page, but THE MUMMY of mummyjobs is still not able to rest.

No.

THE MUMMY of mummyjobs has been asked by her PR agency, Harvey & Hugo, to write a Blog about why she wanted to make the Mummyjobs.co.uk community site in the first place?

THE MUMMY of mummyjobs is currently so tired, that she cannot remember why she thought starting her own business would be a good idea and is not at all pleased that she cannot get out of writing the blog, she can’t, she was supposed to write said blog, 2 weeks ago…

So THE MUMMY of mummyjobs wrote;

“Hi.

My name is Cheney Hamilton and I’m a border line Alcoholic (that’s a joke, although I do enjoy the occasional bottle of wine!), as well as THE MUMMY of mummyjobs.co.uk

I am currently serving my second sentence of maternity leave (I’m 7 months in) and somewhat surprisingly I have grown very fond of my inmates. They are fast becoming my best friends and keep me constantly entertained.

My first sentence was spent longing for my adult counterparts and a life outside the front door; amazing how a little thing like a child born with hip dysplasia can so easily and fundamentally rock your world – The short story?  My Bea was trussed up in a Pavlik Harness at 6 weeks, Frog Cast at 8 weeks, all clear at 4 months, relapse at 6 months, surgery at 10 months, full body Hip Spica until she was 13 months old; which at least allowed us to have an Happy effing 2nd Christmas, thank you very much.  The long story was filled with tears, trauma and a profound wonder at how resilient that this little life which we had brought into the world, could be. (If you’re interested, or anyone out there is going through this – please do get in touch – I’ll give you the long story with a happy ending!)

Anyway, as you might imagine, I went running back to work after 5 months – thank the Lord for the MP who allowed parents to split maternity leave, thank him even more for my more than willing husband!

Back to my second sentence and I can honestly say that I had every intention of going back to my career. My employer was great with everything I went through with Bea, I really couldn’t have asked for more than the understanding and support I received. But this time something felt different…

It’s true that I still miss adult interaction and the buzz of being on a sales floor, but there is something deeply gratifying in spending the days with my children and watching them grow. Wondering where they learnt that funny phrase, or marvelling at how quickly they grasped the concept of things that we as adults would take an age to learn.

So I started to map out how I could make it work; be home with the kids, but still have a career and bring home the bacon.  For me it was simple. I took something that I was good at and merged it with the one thing I will always need help and support with. Digital Sales & Motherhood – I will let you decide which is which! So mummyjobs.co.uk was born – and Not to get mums a job, as one might think from its name; but to be a tool, a confidant, a support and hopefully a friend who helps mums get on with the job of being a mum, in whatever form she needs it.

So that’s what I did and why I did it.

I’m happy to say my girls are both well – they are already confident, strong, independent women who know what they want and exactly how to get it…

They are 2½ and 7 months old respectively.”

It’s now 3am, THE MUMMY of mummyjobs has only 1 more sleep until the launch of mummyjobs.co.uk as well as that very early meeting with the kids. Her last bottle of Malbec has just dripped its last drop – it must be time for bed.

Good Night.

 

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Mums Returning To Work

Don’t give in to guilt, you’ve worked hard for your career

When you have children, your list of job roles suddenly multiplies. You become a mother, a caregiver, a nurse, a protector and many more. But one title many mothers feel guilty about is one they held long before their little bundle came along; employee.

Some women will choose to step right back into their career, others will take up new challenges, perhaps working from home or setting up a business. No matter which applies to you, there is one common thread; you have nothing to feel guilty about. Science says so.

A study led by New York’s Columbia University School of Social Work found that while there are downsides to mothers returning to work during their child’s first year, there are also significant advantages, including an increase in household income and a greater likelihood that children receive a high quality of care.

Here are some things to remember when feeling guilty about returning to work:

Life is full of sacrifices
There will always be compromises and sacrifices when it comes to combining being a mother and having a career. What’s important is that you remember why you are making them in the first place.
Make a list of the reasons why you go to work – money, sanity, friends that don’t wipe their sticky fingers on your clothes (we hope!). Although there will be times you miss a dance show or a school assembly, your family and yourself are all better off with you having a rewarding and satisfying career.

Should is not a word that belongs in your vocabulary
Do you remember your mum screaming on the sidelines at every football game? How about right at the front for the Christmas production every year? No? That’s because it’s unrealistic, especially for working mums!
‘Should’ is an unhealthy way of looking at your parental responsibilities. Once you replace it with ‘could’, you’ll find yourself feeling less guilty about choosing to work late on that all important project than being at the fourth performance of Jimmy being second octopus in the school play.

‘Good enough’, is good enough
You’ve made the decision to go back to work and your career is going better than ever – but you’re working yourself into the ground by overcompensating at home to be the ‘perfect parent’. If you find what that is – do let us know!
Going to work doesn’t mean it’s more important than your children, it’s just important to you. So when you’re at home, be present, be happy and be a role model. Don’t try to be perfect.

Although being a mother is possibly the most rewarding career you will ever have, you never need to feel guilty about going to work and doing something for you.

If you want to chat to like-minded mothers, or want to get something off your chest, join the conversation here.