Workopolis: News Releases

Time Away From Family Tough for Working Fathers
Workopolis Dads in the Workplace Poll reveals child-care duties are difficult for Dads

June 10, 2008 – Balancing late nights in the board room with late nights in the baby's room can be tricky for working dads, according to new findings from the Workopolis Dads in the Workplace Poll.  The poll asked working fathers about the challenges faced by both working mothers and fathers and found that dads feel they have more difficulty getting time off work for child-care duties or parental leave.  Additionally, one in five (21 per cent) of dads confess that time away from family is their top concern because work commitments mean they miss out on important family moments.

"Women aren't alone in their struggle to balance work and family," said Patrick Sullivan, President of Workopolis and father of two.  "Working dads don't want to come home just in time to kiss the kids goodnight.  They want to help feed, bathe, read to them … and then kiss them goodnight.  Employers need to be aware of the challenges facing working dads – and put policies in place that enable them to be successful both on the job and at home."

Finding time for household chores and not being able to turn off work at the end of the day is challenging for working dads, with 15 and 11 per cent respectively of the respondents indicating this was their biggest working dad obstacle.  Not surprisingly, those with more disposable income have additional troubles powering down at the end of the day.  Almost one in five (16 per cent) of dads with a family income of $100,000 or more report this is their primary challenge. 

Don't Worry Dear; It's All Under Control
As some dads struggle to balance work and home life, 40 per cent of working dads claim everything is manageable, thank you very much.  But this declaration is a sharp contrast to what working moms have to say.  According to Workopolis' 2007 Mother's Day survey*, only five per cent of working moms had no challenges juggling life.

  • Quebec dads are the extreme when it comes to keeping everything under control – over half (54 per cent) cite no challenges, and only three percent indicate that time away from family was a concern.
  • Finding time for chores was the top concern for almost one-quarter (23 per cent) of working fathers in Western Canada, and thereby better mimicking the challenge felt by working moms.

 

Tips for Working Dads Struggling to Find Balance

  • Time management applies at home too – Work projects and responsibilities are scheduled into your calendar; take the same approach to family time.  Make note of class trips, big games and recitals, and schedule time for these important dates.   
  • Be an essential ingredient at the dinner table – Try to be home for dinner as often as you can.  Absence at meal time should be a rare occurrence, not the norm. Lend a hand with meal preparation or spend time with the children.  
  • Take your kid to work – it works - If your workplace allows, bring your kids to work and show them what you do for a living.  If not, talk to them about what you do when you are away from the family.
  • Do your homework - Take note of other dads at your workplace and in your social group.  Follow example from those who make family a high priority and ask for pointers on everything from how to handle sick days as well as time away from the kids.

Father Really DOES Know Best
We've heard the expression many times, so it must be true.  But do we believe it?

When it comes to career-related advice, one-third of working dads polled (35 per cent) indicated they had acted on recommendations from their fathers and were happy with how things turned out; another 18 per cent didn't listen to what Dear Old Dad had to say. 

"My biggest piece of advice for working fathers is to take the time to enjoy the little moments with your children.  The most important title to me was always ‘world's best dad' versus what was written on my business card," said Sullivan.

For more information on how dads can juggle both work and home life as well as for career-advice from high-profile Canadian fathers such as CFL Commissioner, Mark Cohon, and triathalete and Olympic gold-medallist, Simon Whitfield, please check out www.workopolis.com

About Workopolis:
Workopolis is Canada's largest and most popular online career-solutions provider with over 3.6 million unique visitors monthly in Canada, the most posted resumes and twice as many job postings as the nearest competitor. 

Workopolis provides a fully bilingual suite of industry-leading products and services including:

  • Powerful Resume Database search functions and intuitive screening tools to help connect employers with the "best fit" candidates – contributing to a 71% hiring success rate for customers.
  • An inside look at niche industries with access to over 100 professional and trade associations. 
  • Career alerts, resume rescue and online salary calculator to help job seekers find the right job.

Headquartered in Toronto, Workopolis has offices in 8 Canadian cities.  Workopolis is a partnership of Toronto Star Newspapers Ltd. and Gesca Ltd., the newspaper publishing subsidiary of Power Corporation of Canada.

Workopolis is the exclusive Official Supplier of Online Recruitment Services for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

About the poll: The poll was conducted by Harris/Decima between May 1 and 13, 2008 via a national omnibus telephone survey among a representative sample of 248 working Canadian fathers.  The margin of error is +/- 6.2%.

For more information or to schedule an interview for local commentary in Toronto, Calgary or Montreal, please contact:

Amy Davidson or Meredith Adolph

Environics Communications

416-969-2830 / 416-969-2667

* Harris/Decima teleVox poll conducted April 2007.