By the time it gets to your baby’s first birthday, many women decide for varied reasons to return to work. Maybe it was always your intention to return to work, or maybe you’ve decided that you need to for financial reasons or to improve your self-esteem.

Work Colleagues

If possible, try and keep in touch with your work colleagues throughout your maternity leave. If you’re particularly close to some of them, take your baby in to see them and catch up on all the work gossip, whether it be of a professional or social nature. This is important to allow you to easily slot back into the office atmosphere and not feel out of the loop.

Keep In Touch Days

By law, every employee on maternity leave, is entitled to take up to 10 paid ‘keep in touch’ days, where she can return to work and catch up with what has been going on. By showing your face at your company workplace, you’ll be able to get to grips with new members of your team, a change in structure, the latest in office politics and be trained on new procedures or systems. You’re under no obligation to use any of these days, but you should definitely make it a consideration.


It’s likely that whilst you’ve been caring for your baby, you’ve not had much chance to keep up your Information Technology skills. If you feel like you need a refresher before you return to the office, then speak to your I.T staff who may be able to give you a quick reminder session on your work systems and at the very least will be able to provide you with details of your usernames and passwords, so you can get stuck straight in to your work. If any new applications or systems have been introduced to your work environment whilst you’re away, then ask to be trained on these so that you’re up to speed.

Flexible Working

Now that you have a baby, you may want to consider your working timetable. By law, you can request to have your working hours changed if you’d like to go part-time or work flexible hours. Your workplace are required to consider your proposal and to see how this would affect your ability to do your work. Always try and provide your company with some positive reasons that they could benefit from teh arrangement. For instance, if you’re going part-time then they would save money on paying your wages. If you want to start work earlier than everyone else, what tasks could you perform before anyone else arrives at the office? Have a think about everything that you have to offer your company and write it all down in a carefully thought-out proposal.

Your commitment

When you first arrive back at work, you might end up greatly missing and worrying about your little one. Some workplaces might be extremely supportive of this, but others won’t care about your external commitments and will just want to know that you are now able to be fully focussed on the job that they pay you to do. Although you’re perfectly entitled to take leave if your baby is ill etc, under normal circumstances you should show your bosses and colleagues that you are fully loyal and committed to your role in the company.

  • Steer clear of calling to check on your baby every 30 minutes
  • Never openly whinge about how awful it is to be back at work
  • Don’t spend too much time dossing around on the Internet

One Response to Returning to work after maternity leave

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