FlexJobs Survey Finds Parents Rank Work Flexibility Ahead of Salary

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Nearly 40 percent of parents have left a job because it did not have work flexibility

"These survey findings indicate work flexibility is not just a convenience for working parents, but a real necessity," said Sara Sutton Fell, Founder and CEO of FlexJobs

According to a recent FlexJobs survey of nearly 1,200 parents with children 18 and younger living at home, work flexibility (84 percent) and work-life balance (80 percent) are the most important factors when parents consider a job opportunity. Parents placed these ahead of other factors, such as salary (75 percent), health insurance (42 percent), company reputation (39 percent) and 401(k)/retirement benefits (29 percent) when evaluating a job prospect.

The interest in work flexibility for working parents has increased dramatically in the past several decades. Now that both parents work full-time in nearly half of two-parent households in America, and single parents account for 26 percent of family households with children, flexible work arrangements are one of the most critical components to making the work-life juggle possible. FlexJobs survey shows that 91 percent of working parents said having children living at home affects their interest in a flexible job. Only 4 percent of parents are very concerned that having a flexible work arrangement will hurt their career progression.

“These survey findings indicate that work flexibility is not just a convenience for working parents, but a real necessity,” said Sara Sutton Fell, Founder and CEO of FlexJobs. “In fact, nearly 40 percent have actually left a job because of the lack of work flexibility options, and an additional 20 percent are actively looking for new work because of it. From recruiting and retention perspectives, it is costly to any company for more than half of their working parent employees to leave or consider leaving, especially when 86 percent of working parents would be more loyal to an employer if they simply had flexible work options.”

Work-life balance was named the top reason working parents seek flexible work (84 percent), followed by family (83 percent), time savings (45 percent), and commuting stress (43 percent). In addition to paying for basic necessities, child-related costs and saving for retirement, 56 percent of parents say they work so they can travel, and because they are passionate about success in their career (46 percent). They also cite wanting to contribute to charity (27 percent) and to pay for continuing education for themselves (26 percent).

Additional findings from the survey uncovered other benefits of work flexibility, including:

Parents want to work and are confident in their dual parent/employee roles:

  • The majority of parents report “needing” to work, but 68 percent--more than two out of three parents--also report “wanting” to work.
  • 91 percent are entirely sure that they can simultaneously be both great employees and great parents
  • 8 percent are hopeful that they can simultaneously be both great employees and great parents

Increased parental involvement at schools:

  • 93 percent of working parents indicated that flexible work arrangements would increase their volunteerism at their children’s schools or organized activities
  • Of those, 56 percent are parents who said they would start volunteering
  • Another 34 percent who already currently volunteer said they would be able to volunteer more

Improved health and savings:

  • 98 percent think having a job with flexibility would have a positive impact on their overall quality of life
  • 87 percent think it would allow them to be less stressed
  • 78 percent think it would make them more healthy
  • 88 percent think it would save them money

The most in-demand type of flexible work arrangement for working parents is 100 percent telecommuting (89 percent), but flexible schedule (74 percent), part-time schedule (51 percent) partial telecommuting (49 percent), alternative schedule (49 percent) , and freelance (42 percent) are also in demand.

*Demographic breakdown of the 1189 respondents, all with children under 18 living at home: Ages: 20-39 (48 percent), 40-59 (51 percent), 60+ (1 percent); Education: high school degree or equivalent (3 percent), some college but no degree (15 percent), associate or bachelor degree (48 percent), graduate degree (34 percent); Career level: entry-level (8 percent), experienced (60 percent), manager or higher (32 percent).

For more information visit: https://www.flexjobs.com/blog/post/survey-parents-rank-work-flexibility-ahead-salary/

To request additional information, please contact Kathy Gardner at kgardner@flexjobs.com.

About FlexJobs
FlexJobs is the leading online service for professionals seeking telecommuting, flexible schedule, part-time, and freelance jobs. With flexible job listings in over 50 career categories, and opportunities ranging from entry-level to executive and freelance to full-time, FlexJobs offers job seekers a safe, easy, and efficient way to find professional and legitimate flexible job listings. Having helped over one million people in their job searches, FlexJobs has appeared on CNN and Marketplace Money and in TIME, Forbes, Fortune, and hundreds of other trusted media outlets. FlexJobs' Founder & CEO Sara Sutton Fell has also launched two additional partner sites, Remote.co and 1 Million for Work Flexibility, to help provide education and awareness about the viability and benefits of remote working and work flexibility. Sutton Fell is also the creator of The TRaD* Works Forum (*Telecommuting, Remote, & Distributed), dedicated to helping companies leverage the benefits of telecommuting, remote and distributed teams.

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Kathy Gardner
FlexJobs
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