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Women Returners is a consulting, coaching and network organisation working with employers across sectors to access, support and retain returning professionals, a largely untapped pool of highly-qualified, experienced and motivated talent. We are experts in enabling talented professionals to restart their careers after an extended career break.
We pioneered the introduction of returnships, created the ‘supported hiring’ concept and led the rapid growth of the returner programme market in both the UK and Ireland. We have recently co-authored the Returner Programmes: Best Practice Guidelines for Employers on behalf of the Government Equalities Office.
We have partnered with over 40 leading organisations to provide end-to-end support in designing and delivering tailored returner programmes: returnships, supported hiring initiatives into permanent roles and returner events. Our clients include EY, O2, Skanska, Fidelity International, Macquarie Group, Bloomberg, Balfour Beatty, Virgin Media, M&G Investments, Barclays, The Cabinet Office, Enfield Council, Allianz, Old Mutual Wealth and The Home Office.
We have specialised expertise in returner coaching, together with an in-depth psychological and commercial understanding. Through our bespoke four-stage Career Returners Coaching Programme, we have supported many individuals and cohorts of returner programme participants to effectively make the transition back to work. We understand the world of the career break professional and are able to support an effective reintegration back into corporate life.
Through our ever-expanding Women Returners Professional Network, a network community of over 4,000 returning professionals, we link employers with the hard-to-reach group of high-calibre women on career break. We are the main recruitment source for UK returnships with leading employers.
We also connect employers with returners through our returner events, primarily our annual Women Returners Conference in London.
What our clients say about us:
“At O2 we are always looking for new ways to attract talent and specifically female talent in STEM. Women Returners provided us with a one stop shop of well qualified candidates and professional support to launch the first of our programmes. Julianne and the team at Women Returners supported us every step of the way, from supporting with the design of our recruitment process, helping to identify the candidates to shaping the programme and training. With a focussed and consultancy approach Women Returners were willing to tailor to suit the company and the requirements of the O2 programme. Following the success of the programme we sponsored the Women Returners Conference which was a massive success and again showed the amazing talent looking to return to the workplace.”
“I believe that working with Women Returners is the most effective and efficient way to run a returner programme. They have the expertise, the networks and the knowledge and provide a specialised and independent source of support to HR and to the participant group. After 30 years in HR, I have extensive experience but not of supporting people back to work after long career breaks. Women Returners made this process easy for us and were a major factor in the success of the returnship. I would not run another programme without them.”
Julie Thornton, Head of HR, Tideway