OT expectations take toll on working moms’ careers

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in Compensation and Benefits,Human Resources

Working mothers are 52% more likely than other women to leave their jobs if they work more than 50 hours a week in a field dominated by men, according to researchers at Indiana University.

Their analysis of U.S. Census data found that the long hours expected of professionals in the legal, medical, finance and engineering fields correlate to women with children leaving the workforce early. Men make up about 70% of the workforce in those fields.

Study author Youngjoo Cha believes employers could help more professional women stay in the workforce by minimizing expectations that employees must work overtime. One way: Cap allowable work hours, regardless of gender. Also recommended: More part-time career opportunities in white-collar professions.

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