Half of women consider forgoing baby for career

Half of women without children would consider not starting a family in favour of their career, a new study suggests.

The study by the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) saw half of childless women willing to consider not starting a family, as they are concerned of the impact it would have on their career progression.

The survey of 2,000 women – half with children and half without – took into account those in various business sectors. It found that 67 per cent of those without a family were concerned of the impact having a child could have on their working career. Forty-nine per cent also said that in their current career they are not offered the flexibility required to care for a family.

Respondents with children were mindful of the effect of taking long maternity leave on their career, with 38 per cent taking six months or less. The top reason for returning to work was finances, according to a staggering 62 per cent of those surveyed. More worrying is the 30 per cent who say fear of losing their job was a reason for rejoining the workforce.

AAT career coach Aimee Bateman said: “AAT’s findings, whilst sad, are unfortunately not surprising. In my work I have come across a lot of women who worry about balancing their care and career commitments or who have decided to retrain as their current role provides little flexibility.

“While there is obviously an issue in the nation’s workplaces, there are options that women can explore. There are careers which can fit around caring needs, including those within the accounting and finance profession.”

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