June 03, 2021
By now, most employers should be aware of the fact that supporting working parents amongst their staff comes with countless benefits. Yet, “no two employees have the exact same needs” (Sample survey for employers 2021). Important factors to keep in mind are family structures, childrens’ ages, and available external support. In addition, specific needs may change vastly over time (ibid.). Therefore, the central question that remains is how to give working moms and dads the support they deserve. Here are two effective ways to find out.
When done wrong, HR surveys might be interpreted as an intrusive way to monitor staff. When done right, they offer an effective way to learn about the needs of your employers. In the second case, it is exactly the fact that surveys can be conducted with a higher degree of anonymity that offers potential. That is because employees might point to problems that they might consider too sensitive for a personal conversation. Surveys can also paint a broader picture than personal talks and offer an instrument to “diagnose problems, identify solutions, and even grade past initiatives” across different departments (Przystanski 2021).
2. Personal conversations
When it comes to lending effective support to working parents, hardly anything beats personal conversations. Regular check-ins offer a proven way to communicate about the needs of your employers on a very personal level. What seems to be most important here, is “to create a safe space for important conversations to be had and to help your employees feel comfortable, confident, and supported” (Alioto 2020). Yet, at the same time, both parties should be very open about possible limitations. On the side of managers, this might entail acknowledging a lacking capability to fully understand the responsibilities of working moms and dads. On the side of working parents, talking about limitations concerning the ways they are expected to fulfill work roles can point to possible solutions like increased flexibility with schedules and vacation time. Would you like to find out more about the specific needs of working parents among your staff? Are you in doubt whether surveys or personal conversations will work better for your organization? Feel free to reach out to one of our experts who will happily assist you with all questions that you may come up with.