Flexibility ‘means long hours’

2557844866_199feec111_oOver 60% of women believe flexible working means doing long hours, according to a major survey on women and work.

Opportunity Now said 63% of women feel flexible working means long hours, while 81% of women feel having children will affect their career progression. The figures are preliminary results from Project 28-40, which aims to survey 100,000 women on the world of work.

The survey is being hosted by PwC and its analysis of the first 15,000 responses shows 62% of women feel under pressure to succeed both at work and home, with 69% saying society expects them to put family before career. However, 89% of those surveyed said they think being a working mother makes them a good role model for their children, provides balance in their lives and enables them to provide a good life for their children.

The project aims to find out why the 28-40 age range is a ‘danger zone’ for women when their career progression slows compared with men and many leave the workforce altogether.

Helena Morrissey CBE, chair of Opportunity Now, said: “28-40 is a critical age for career development where at the moment women fail to be promoted at the same rate as men – a problem both for women and companies. This survey, the largest ever undertaken globally, will help us all really understand the reasons behind the current imbalance. We’re asking women to share their experiences candidly and to provide their own perspectives about harder-to-measure aspects such as culture and attitudes, so better initiatives can be developed for everyone’s benefit.”

Following the survey the data will be used to help create new initiatives that can help employers improve the gender balance at all levels in their organisations.

The survey is available at http://www.project2840.com and the full results will be published during Responsible Business Week (31 March – 4 April).

Image credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mathieustruck/

 

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