Caring for our carers

We’ve always thought its important offer flexible working options – and right now, we’re supporting our employees with the transition to this new status quo that involves long-term home workingThere may have been some teething problems when it came to getting our technology in place, but now our people are feeling more empowered to use digital tools so they can remotely keep in touch with their clients, candidates and colleagues on a regular basis. But long-term home working can present challenges. 

Balancing situations 

Working from home is different for everyone. For some it’s a juggling act to work from home whilst taking care of family or handling personal situations. So how has SThree been able to offer support to those who have dependents to care for? 

Offering parental leave 

We’ve put a number of measures in place to help with this. Firstly, all of our employees, regardless of the length of service, are entitled to a minimum of one-week parental leave to look after children or other family members as required.  

Noor van den Bogaard, Marketing Executive said, ‘I took some half days for parental leave which has helped me find a balance between work and home schooling my children. It made me feel more relaxed about dividing my time and attention between work and kids. Now that I am back to working full days, we have established a routine that works for us.’  

Keeping communication open 

Well-being is key for us – we recently sat down with Karima Green, Diversity Inclusion and Engagement Partner at Specialist Staffing Group, of which Real Life Sciences is a part of, to chat about the programs she’s implemented to offer support for our people. And we think it's important that people have a safe space to share their thoughts.  

According to Karima, ‘The key is to be inclusive and support people in feeling connected during these uncertain times and there are lots of brilliant, local initiatives that have been really helpful in bringing individuals across our business together. Specialist Staffing group set up a forum that exists to provide an opportunity for caregivers to come together once a week for a 30-minute meeting. The idea is that everyone is able to share experiences and can provide positive tips to help each other out.  

The people attending this forum come from all areas of our company - from directors to new starters, anyone and everyone is welcome. Some have babies, toddlers, school children, and teenagers to look after. Whereas others may have elderly or ill parents to care for. Whilst they all have their individual challenges the fact that they can share them and get support and useful tips and tricks helps a lot. 

Finding a balance 

Everyone experiences their own challenges when it comes to finding a balance. Through these initiatives we’ve been able to support people with different obstacles using different techniques. The forum allows people to share their individual frustrations and gain support from their peers and the parental leave scheme allows a little more flexibility during an uncertain time. One thing is for sure – the safety and well-being of our colleagues, candidates, clients, and contractors remains, and will continue to remain – our primary focus. 

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