Moms making the shift from full-time to temp workers

As all mothers know, making the transition back to the working world after having a child is challenging. After years of rising through the ranks, a full-time career and the demands of parenting can feel overly burdensome.

According to CNN, several staffing agencies have formed over the last few years to help women keep their hand in their industry while giving them the flexibility to raise their kids. Companies include Mom Corps, On-Ramps, Flexible Executives, Flexible Resources and FlexWork Connection.

Employers are tapping into the skills of this talented group of professionals by hiring them for temporary jobs in accounting, human resources, marketing and other fields.

Mom Corps was born in 2005 after founder Allison O’Kelly left her manager’s job at Toys R Us after her baby’s health problems forced her to miss work frequently. She started working on contract as an accountant, and the work kept coming in. She had to offer some of it to her friends, in fact. She saw the call for ‘on-demand’ talent and started her business, which has 25,000 job seekers in its database. Most are college-educated, 30-44 years old and earn $40 to $70 an hour, CNN reported.

The demands of full-time work are felt keenly by mothers surveyed by the Pew Research Center last year. About 60 percent said working part time would be ideal for them.

And according to the North American Press Syndicate, employers may use even more contract employees in a slipping economy.

"In an economic downturn, companies tend to be more cautious around permanent hiring and look for cost-effective alternatives to manage workloads," said Ben Jablow, senior business development director of Sologig.com, a job site for independent professionals. "This presents opportunities for those who are currently freelancing and those who are considering trading in their corporate warrior status to be their own boss."

A survey of more than 2,900 employers nationwide, conducted for CareerBuilder.com, a showed that 42 percent of employers who do business with freelancers and contractors are relying on them more than they did a year ago. Fifteen percent plan to increase compensation as well.

Many mothers not only want to work less, but at home if they can. Wall Street Journal columnist Sue Shellenbarger wrote that she gets a “nonstop stream of e-mail” from readers wanting to work from home. She said that many at-home jobs are low-paying and without benefits, but for those with professional skills, elance.com and oDesk.com can connect clients with about 90,000 skilled freelancers each in a range of fields, including accounting.


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