Women in the Workplace’ is a partnership project between Best Beginnings and Pregnant Then Screwed. This project is funded through the VCSE Health and Wellbeing Fund, part of a partnership programme between Department of Health & Social Care, NHS England and UK Health Security Agency. 

As a part of the project, Best Beginnings is aiming to expand the support we offer to women and birthing people in employment across the UK as they transition into parenthood. The aim of this research consultation was to explore and capture the lived experiences of our parent network via the Baby Buddy app and our parent panel to contribute to our wider knowledge as we co develop resources for the Baby Buddy app. 

Nine semi-structured interviews were carried out with women who were employed and living in the United Kingdom.  

Participants’ experiences of pregnancy and maternity in the workplace were extremely varied. Positive experiences were characterised by well-established professional and personal boundaries, supportive workplace relationships, confidence and knowledge of company policies, and flexibility from the workplace to make necessary time and space adjustments.  

In contrast, negative experiences were marked by confusion regarding understanding policy and pay related to pregnancy and maternity, hurtful interactions with colleagues and higher ups leading to a lack of supportive friendships at work, and a lack of available spaces to facilitate appropriate resting and breastfeeding.  

Read the full report here and the literature review here.