Suzy Morrissey and Maria Williamson
12/04/2017 11:00 am - 11:30 am

 Speaker: Suzy Morrissey, Team Leader, Tax Strategy Team, the Treasury
 Speaker: Maria Williamson, Marketing Communications Specialist, Ministry for Women


Experiences of public sector employees on parental leave and the HR policies that support them

In 2016 the Ministry for Women completed an international literature review on women returning to work. The review noted that there has been no research undertaken in New Zealand since 2007 on women’s experiences of returning to work from parental leave.Therefore any issues and challenges for New Zealand women in advancing their careers are not well known or understood.

In order to understand state sector employees’ experiences when returning to work after parental leave, a cross-agency research project was undertaken by the Ministry for Women and The Treasury, using a design thinking approach. This included focus groups with 35 parents (mostly women) and 21 in-depth interviews with participants from core state sector agencies.

A review of state sector parental leave policies and practices was also undertaken.This was to understand what the state sector agencies provide to support parents on parental leave with a view to improving the consistency of entitlements and experiences for employees.

This project is one part of a programme of research commissioned by the Ministry for Women on developing an evidence base and a deeper understanding of women’s experience of the gender pay gap and its drivers and the effect this has on their careers.