54% of women in Manchester know someone who had to give up work due to childcare costs


New research from Women in Business EXPO has found a lack of flexibility and issues with childcare costs are some of the biggest challenges women in the UK face in their careers. The research, which surveyed working women throughout the UK, found that over half (54%) of women in Manchester know someone who has had to give up work due to the cost of childcare, whilst 50% know someone who has had to give up work due to a lack of flexible working options.

This lack of flexibility can have a far reaching impact on the work/life balance of many women in the region. In fact, 37% are frustrated that they have had to sacrifice salary and career progression to ensure work/life balance in bringing up a family.

Failures in flexibility also extended to parental leave, 20% of Manchester women state they would have to take parental leave even though they earn more than their partner. Given this response, it’s unsurprising then that when asked what initiatives would have the most positive impact on workplace gender equality 43% called for greater support for paternity leave in the workplace, with 42% stating that greater support needed to come from the government for this.

Christie Day, Group Event Director for Women in Business EXPO commented:

“There’s been huge strides in workplace gender equality in the last couple of decades, but this research has shown there is still a long way to go before we achieve total gender parity. A quarter of women in Manchester (24%) still have issues with gender pay gap in their workplace, and 20% still experience everyday sexism. This is simply not good enough. Businesses leaders need to start taking greater responsibility for ensuring equality in the workplace beyond what is mandated by the government. Offering flexible working, for example, would not only benefit female employees with children but is something everyone would value.”

Launched by Hub Exhibitions, Women in Business Expo is a new free-to-attend event designed to provide an environment where women can learn, network and share experiences. The event will take place 16-17 October 2019 at Farnborough International Conference and Exhibition Centre, Hampshire, and on 30 June – 1 July 2020 at Manchester Central, Manchester. It will provide attendees with a range of fascinating talks and access to leading companies, which will be providing business, franchise and career opportunities along with support for future career moves.

This year’s event, sponsored by Vodafone, AvastPure Storage and Red Hatwill include a focus on Women in Tech, Women in Franchise and Women in Finance.

For more information about Women in Business Expo, please visit www.wibexponorth.co.uk or follow us on Twitter @wibexpouk

The research was conducted by 3GEM on behalf of Women in Business EXPO. It surveyed 2000 women in employment across the UK to find out about the challenges they face in the workplace.