After having a baby you may have a lot of mixed feelings about going back to work. You may be feeling guilty about leaving your bub, anxious about who will care for them, or worried about the costs of childcare, but there’s also lots of positive feelings you may think about.
Working is a great way for you to meet people and mix with other adults, a way to challenge yourself, to make your own money and to be a wonderful role model for your child. If you decide to return to work there’s lot of questions you may have about it all, so let’s help put your mind at ease:
What about Child Care?
Child care can be a huge decision, wondering how you can afford it, where’s a great safe place for your child to go, what options you may have. Types of child care can include;
- Friends & Family – if you know someone that you can completely trust and you feel comfortable with, such as a close friend or family member, then this situation is awesome. It can cost a lot less and you may be able to care for their kids, so it works both ways and is easier for you both. The times of care may also be flexible and makes it easier for you to work part time if you want.
- Child Care Centre – (also known as long day care,) is centre based care provided by professional child care staff. Children can be cared for from birth to 6 years old. Care can be provided Monday to Friday around 8 hours a day, or you can just book the days you need. Some child care centres have waiting lists so it’s a great idea if you’re planning on using this service to ring a few months before to visit, see if you like it and go on their waiting list. Child care centres have strict regulations for safety and care and you can receive Government assistance to send your child there.
- Family Day Care – is care provided in the educator’s home and can provide care from birth to 12 years old. Family day care homes usually have a mix of ages together, whereas child care centres tend to have separate rooms for each age group eg 0-2 years, 2-3 years, 3-5 years. Like child care centres, Family Day Care is regulated and Government assistance is available.
- Nanny Service – some people like the idea of someone coming to your home, because your bub can sleep in their own bed and be in their own surroundings. But other people say it’s great for your child to be cared for away from their home where they can get used to other people or routines,. BUT it’s completely your decision, there’s no right or wrong decision. A nanny service can be quite costly as they charge an hourly rate and there is no government assistance available for you to use this type of service.
- In Home Care Program – is approved care in your home and is available for families who are unable to access other mainstream child care options such as those listed above, or who work non standard hours or have children with complex needs. It is run through In Home Care Support Agencies.
Government Assistance – is called Child Care Subsidy and is a payment to help you pay for child care. Child care subsidy is only available for approved child care services like regulated child care centres, family day care or in home care programs. To get child care subsidy you need to meet certain criteria, please click the link below for more information.
Where can I find a job?
There’s many places where you can search for jobs, a great place to start is by asking your friends if they know of any jobs going, it’s amazing who knows who and may be able to help. There’s also great free services that can help you;
1. Job Assistance Services:
The Gordon Skills and Jobs Centre Geelong – as mentioned in the education section. They have a huge amount of services to help you with job information, job application advice, resume tips and interview skills. Phone 5225 0700
Job Active through Centrelink – job active is a great service to connect employers to new staff. For further info check out their website www.jobactive.gov.au They also have helpful tips on writing a resume and ways to prepare you for getting a job.
Jobs Victoria – phone 1300 208 575
There’s also ways to look online through:
Facebook – Local Facebook pages have lots of jobs advertised including;
Geelong Job Classifieds
Geelong Job Watch
Geelong Employment Opportunities
Jobs in Geelong
Or through Job Websites:
Seek – www.seek.com.au
Indeed – www.indeed.com
Job Search – www.jobsearch.gov.au
Careers One – www.careerone.com.au
If you’re even more tech savvy, there’s apps, Instagram and LinkedIn are where some employers post jobs.
Where can I find a job?
When becoming a working mum there’s a number of changes that will happen, this can be super exciting, but may also make you feel a bit stressed at times, so the more you can be prepared for it, the better it can be.
- Before applying for a job think about how many hours will suit you and what days will work. Does your child have other commitments to consider? eg swimming lessons, other activities.
- Routine – Write a list of things you will need to arrange – whether it’s child care, what you may need to wear, transport and how you will get to child care/your workplace. If you need to take public transport, then check on the timetable and the job location you’re looking at.
- Think about the type of job you may like, what you like to do. Sometimes we think we don’t have many skills, but just being a mum has a huge amount of skills such as negotiation, responsibility, planning your time well, multitasking skills such as cooking tea and occupying your child at the same time.
- If you’re breastfeeding, think about what you may like to do. Will you work around feeds – feed before work and when you return. Will you do half bottle, half breast? Will you express into a bottle? Or can you work near where your child has care to continue feeding throughout the day?
- Have a plan for some unexpected events, such as if your child is sick and your may need time off.
- Have realistic expectations – being a working mum means your routines change, so remember that you will have less time to do household chores and everyday tasks. When we have less time it’s really important to look after yourself, eat well, sleep well, keep active. It’s also so important to know that our kids don’t remember how clean the house was, or how well the bed was made, they remember the times we play with them, the laughter and love, so cleaning can wait some days.
We know it can be scary returning to work, but it can be an amazing experience in so many ways for you and your child. We hope this information helps, but you’re welcome to contact us through our “Contact Page” or via email if you have any questions, we would love to help!