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Back to School Means Back to Work

There’s something about this time of year — bred in the bones since childhood insisted on September being a fresh-start kind of month — that sparks a special kind of energy in a person. A new survey confirms same, and points out that the presence of kids in our orbit underscores that impulse.

In new “back-to-school” research, Boulder, CO-based FlexJobs asked 1,300 employment-seeking adults for feedback on how the fall season informs their job search. Among other illuminating results, it’s discovered that parents of children in the school system ramp up their focus on finding employment at this time of year (with the majority citing it as their “most productive” period), and are hungry for a job that will accommodate their child-encumbered lifestyle.

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The highlights of the report:

• Eighty-two percent of parents say that having school-age kids boosts their desire for a flexible job.

• Thirty-three percent of parents say they’ll ramp up their job search in accordance with their kids’ return to the classroom.

• One in three people have a daily commute of two or more hours, notable given the time savings a flexible or work-from-home position would afford them.

• Sixty-seven percent of women and 54 percent of men take longer than 30 minutes to get ready for work.

• One in four women could save more than $1,000 a year if they were to secure a telecommuting post (15 percent of men would anticipate such savings).

“I think it’s compelling to see how directly correlated a parent’s job search and career choices are impacted by their children’s lives,” says FlexJobs CEO Sara Sutton Fell. “When kids go back to school, parents go back to work, and when kids are young, parents overwhelmingly value work flexibility in their careers — often more than the actual job.

“With mothers being one of the most highly educated and under-utilized potential employees, employers who offer work flexibility have a competitive edge to hiring and retaining this audience.”

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