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Croud and Easy Offices work to remove career barriers for women with children

Though work is being done to reduce the gender pay gap, women with children are still being forced to choose between career and family. Together with Easy Offices, Croud is working to promote flexibility as a real solution, both through promoting client research and through the Croud network

The gender pay gap has received a lot of publicity recently, with commentators from across the business and political spheres rightly decrying the unacceptable 7% difference in the amount women are paid compared to men, on average.

What has received less attention, however, is the even more alarming statistic that applies to women with children; the addition of just one child causes the gender pay gap to spike to 21%. This is just one of a range of interesting, challenging findings from a new survey by serviced office provider Easy Offices.

The survey explores the experiences of 1,000 women with children who are in full-time, part-time or self-employed work, and Easy Offices has worked closely with Croud to make sure the results are made visible across a range of media. Throughout the process, the goal has been to ensure that mothers are no longer left out of the conversation when it comes to equal treatment in the workplace.

Home truths

Among the survey’s other findings, it was revealed that 40% of women with children felt they had been discriminated against in the workplace, 50% felt they’d missed out on an average of two promotions during time away to have and raise children, and 90% felt that they’d be in a more senior position now if they hadn’t had children in the first place. That such a huge proportion of mothers should be made to feel as if they must choose between career or family should serve as a wake-up call to employers across the UK, especially as the vast majority are ready and willing to do more once the situation is made clear. This was the guiding principle that Croud followed in our work to promote the Easy Offices findings.

Of course, with a message that affects such a huge segment of the population, and that reveals such uncomfortable truths, getting the word out was an organic process. That said, it took a careful approach to balance the seriousness of the message with the need to frame the campaign positively; berating employers and making small businesses owners feel bad is not conducive to effective communication, nor is it likely to help change attitudes and trends. Instead, we made sure to create a debate, allowing a range of voices to enter the discussion, while making sure to refer back to the positive, simple steps businesses could take to improve flexibility and help mothers balance career and family without letting either one down.

Getting the word out

This approach was a success, as can be seen in the coverage metrics, including an average domain authority of 58, 1.02k shares on Facebook, 2.02m estimated views, and an online readership of 1.66bn. What’s more, the survey findings were picked up by The Sun and The Mirror, giving an international scope to the discussion.

Of course, what didn’t escape our notice from the very beginning is how relevant the issue is to Croud itself. As a platform offering flexible work that can fit around childcare and family responsibilities, the Croud network already counts a number of mums and mums-to-be in its ranks. Now, with the survey revealing that flexibility is one of the chief tools in combating the gender pay gap, it is hoped that more women who either have or are planning to have families will look at the Croud network as the perfect full-time or part-time flexible working solution for their needs.