Award-Winning GRoW App Launches with ‘100 Women Speak’ Research to Address Key Issues Facing Women in the Workforce
3SC has been working with Belina Grow for over 3 years as part of our parental employment programme in London. Its great to see the wider launch of the Grow App which has been used extensively, providing excellent results for Mums in particular in South and West London.
The GRoW Team, who specialise in supporting women into work, has announced that their GRoW App, which won an Innovation Award at the ERSA Awards 2021, is now available for employability providers across the UK. This move enables Employability Practitioners everywhere to access the expertise and knowledge of the specialist team, helping them to better support women in their journey towards employment.
As part of The GROW App’s launch, the GRoW Team conducted research amongst their participants, titled ‘100 Women Speak’, to identify the key challenges and priorities for women seeking employment. The findings reveal that a cost of living crisis is a key driver currently pushing women to find jobs to support household finances. The research also provided other valuable insights including:
- 83% think it is much harder to get a job if you are a mum
- The biggest worry about going back to work is finding childcare (44%)
- A third of women worry about a lack of part-time jobs
- 35% worry that their domestic responsibilities will suffer
- Almost 40% worry that they don’t have a support network to enable them to go to work
- 94% of respondents said they are finding things more expensive and 89% of those state this as the reason they are more likely to try to get a job
- 82% of respondents feel more motivated to work after joining the GRoW Programme and accessing the GRoW App
All of the women surveyed said they would prefer to work than not, but almost half wanted hybrid work that allows them more flexibility. Interestingly only 12% want to work from home opposed to almost 40% who want a job at a place of work.
When asked what the government could do to make it easier for them to work the overwhelming response was for the availability of more part-time work opportunities, which ranked twice as much as making childcare less expensive.
Liz Sewell FIEP, Director of Belina GRoW said: “This research identifies the unique challenges that women face when even thinking about the idea of getting a job. It shows they have legitimate concerns around a lack of support, a lack of childcare and a lack of part-time work, all things that are required to be able to effectively work when you have other responsibilities and priorities. Despite this, 100% of the women still want to work, especially now when they are finding life so much more expensive, and we are encouraged to find that 83% of those women feel more motivated to work as a result of accessing our GRoW App. We are thrilled to be making the app accessible to the whole sector so that those who invest in it can access our experience and expertise to help women overcome the obstacles they face when entering the workforce.”
Scott Parkin FIEP, Group Chief Executive, IEP said: “The GRoW App provides a new and exciting way for employability professionals to engage with their participants in a way that’s not been available before. The App, combined with the expertise and experience of GRoW’s specialist adviser team, provides an innovative way to create a supportive community where women returners to work, and especially those furthest from the labour market, can feel motivated and encouraged to pursue their career goals. With the ability for Employability practitioners to now use the app with their own participants and receive specialist support from the GRoW team, the employability sector can increase opportunities for women to enter or return to the workforce, which is a key priority now especially during these times of economic uncertainty. It’s a great move for GRoW and even better news for the wider sector who can now take advantage of this opportunity.”
Gosia Banach, Personal Support Coach, Child Poverty Action Group said:“I started to use the GRoW App in September 2022 for CPAG’s ‘Your Work Your Way’ (YWYW) Project to cater for the needs of potential second earners… I had never seen anything like the GRoW app before, it was pure innovation. From the outset I saw an increase in engagement and motivation from those I was working with who used the GRoW App and I also achieved a much better understanding about what motivational tools actually worked best for different participants. We used the App to create a community for our participants to come together and get support from one another and quite early on we realised that this was key – giving people the opportunity to see how other people in similar circumstances to themselves were progressing, doing well, and moving forward, cheering them on and sharing their successes.”
Kathryn Jellings FIEP, 3SC Director said:“While Belina GRoW were delivering on 3SC’s Parental Employment Programme, the GRoW App was instrumental in developing and maintaining bonds with parents particularly when face to face contact was not possible during COVID. Post-COVID the App has grown in functionality, delivering a wide range of services, including support with motivation, job seeking, childcare options and much more, offering an online community that can be used 24/7 and most importantly for busy families – whenever is most convenient for them. The content is carefully curated by the brilliant GROW team and participant led/peer support also thrives as a result. It’s highly beneficial that there is no ‘exit point’. Participants can continue to benefit well after they have started work and for as long as they find useful. The feedback we have received from parents on our programme is outstanding and 3SC is piloting other ways to use the GRoW App as part of our Coaching Programmes.”
The GRoW App offers a range of features and resources to help women overcome the obstacles they face when entering the workforce. It provides information on job searching, CV writing, interview preparation, and career development, among other topics. For practitioners it enables them to offer round-the-clock specialist and tailored support that gets results and moves women into work more quickly.
Liz Sewell FIEP will be attending Thursday’s IEP Summit 2023 at London’s RSA House where she will be available to talk about the App and offer trials. In the meantime more information can be found at www.thegrowapp.co.uk.
Liz Sewell, Director | Belina Grow