Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Tips to make a busy schedule work: from Ezypay's Director of Marketing & Sales

This month, Celeste Kirby Brown, Director of Sales, Marketing & Relationships at Ezypay provides tips on how she and her husband Trent Brown (Ezypay’s CEO) juggle their family and their work. It’s not always easy being a working parent especially when both parents work together in senior positions in the same organisation; so how does this dynamic couple manage it? Read on...

This proud couple are Mum and Dad to Aisha (nearly 4) and August (nearly 2). Together, they work at Ezypay, which is a direct debit company that helps businesses in Australia and New Zealand collect ongoing payments from customers.  
Celeste says:

“The hardest transition for me was going on maternity leave in the beginning.  Being a Mum is so overwhelming, new, stressful, joyous, sleep deprived and unknown experience.  I wanted to be with my baby desperately but I was also yearning to go back to the semi controlled day to day of work where I was experienced and kind of knew what to expect”.

“I was really lucky I was able to come back 2 days a week, then 3 days a week and then I built it up to 4.  Our work place is very flexible and we try and take individual needs into account.”

Here are some of the things that Trent and I do that work for us:
  • Plan dinners and food for the week.  Write a list and shop once a week.
  • Both our kids go to family day care so we need to pack their lunches.  We do as much of this as possible on Sunday night.
  • I cook big meals and use leftovers through the week
  • I also try and cook at least one meal for the week on the weekend
  • We get the kids clothes out the night before so we can get them dressed quickly in the morning
  • Trent takes them to care and I pick them up so I try and get to work early and he stays back a bit later.
  • I go to bed early cause I generally get a 5am – 6am wake up call.
  • We both try and have a sleep in or nanna nap on the weekend
  • I pay bills on my iPhone when they arrive from the letter box
  • I have a cleaner once a week
  • I plan Mum and Dad time once a fortnight
  • I have found other Mums around my area and swap babysitting favours
  • I have also found a teenager across the street who is lovely and I ask to babysit too
  • We try and do a nice family thing at least once a week
  • When we get home I generally start dinner and when Trent gets home later he gives the kids a bath.
  • We sit down as a family and have dinner together between 6.30pm – 7pm most nights.
We enjoy it, are very busy and we wouldn't have it any other way.


Caltex Australia offers cash bonuses and childcare assistance to lure new parents back to work

NEW parents are being lured back to work with cash bonuses and generous childcare assistance initiatives aimed at retaining staff.

From next month, oil company Caltex Australia will offer a package that includes quarterly bonuses of 3 per cent, and up to $1500 of emergency childcare.

The move comes as businesses look at ways to stop the drain of talent after childbirth, including flexible hours, paying for childcare and building onsite childcare centres.

The Caltex BabyCare initiative aims to help with costs such as childcare, with the bonus paid until the child's second birthday.

For an employee earning $75,000 a year, this would mean $9000 before tax, inclusive of superannuation.

The company also will set up breastfeeding rooms and help find childcare providers.
"Returning to work after caring full-time for a newborn baby can be a challenging time, both emotionally and financially."
Caltex chairwoman Elizabeth Bryan said the package, to be launched today in Sydney, would be paid in addition to its paid parental leave.

"Returning to work after caring full-time for a newborn baby can be a challenging time, both emotionally and financially," Ms Bryan said.

"The package provides these employees with both the practical support and flexibility."

She said modelling had found only a small number would need to return to work to make the program worthwhile.

Shine Lawyers pays up to 20 per cent more of an employee's salary in childcare/domestic costs on return to work, and 18 weeks' maternity leave.

Insurance Australia Group offers 20 weeks' parental leave at full pay - 14 weeks, then a six-week "welcome back payment".

Helen Conway, director of the Equal Opportunity for Women in the Workplace Agency, said the incentives would pay dividends for organisations.

"Organisations that do this will benefit from greater access to talent, increased morale, and the retention of talented staff all of which contribute to better organisational performance," she said.

Elissa Doherty
From: Herald Sun
September 26, 2012

Posted by: mums@work,

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Happy Fathers Day

Australian dads have something extra to look forward to this Fathers’ Day, with just one month to go before first claims for Dad and Partner Pay can be lodged.
Applications open on 1 October for the Australian Government’s new support for new dads.
Dads and partners, including same-sex couples, will receive two weeks’ pay at the rate of the National Minimum Wage (about $606 per week before tax) from 1 January next year, giving them extra support when their new baby arrives.
The Government’s scheme will help dads or partners take time more off in those critical early weeks to bond with their baby and support mums right from the start.
Dad and Partner Pay will give workers who are self-employed, contractors and casual and who don’t have paid parental leave entitlements, the financial security to stay at home with mum and baby.
To be eligible, dads or partners must:
  • be on unpaid leave or not working and be helping to care for the child during the two weeks;

  • have worked at least 330 hours (just over one day a week) in 10 of the 13 months before the start of their Dad and Partner Pay period, with no more than an eight-week gap between two consecutive working days; and

  • have earned $150,000 or less in the previous financial year.

Dad and Partner Pay builds on Labor’s successful Paid Parental Leave scheme that has been supporting Australian mums since January 2011.
Australian mums love our Paid Parental Leave Scheme - more than 206,000 parents have applied since it began.
Dads or partners can lodge their claims for Dad and Partner Pay up to three months before the expected date of birth or adoption, to prepare for the arrival of the new addition to their family.
Joint Media Release With: 
Jenny Macklin MP
Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs
Minister for Disability Reform

Equal Pay Day – Gillard Government working to close gender pay gap

This year, 2 September is not just a celebration of the role fathers and partners play in our lives – it is also Equal Pay Day.
The date of Equal Pay Day is calculated on the average number of extra days a woman would have to work until she earns the same amount as men do in a financial year.
The Minister for Community Services and the Status of Women, Julie Collins, said Equal Pay Day reminds us all of the seriousness and persistence of gender pay inequity, which currently sits at 17.5 per cent in Australia.
“Equal Pay Day is a reminder that on average Australian women will work an extra 64 days to earn what a man would in a year.
“The Gillard Government is committed to closing this gender pay gap.
“Equality is at the heart of the Australian Government’s commitment to building a strong economy on the back of a fair and just society.
“That’s why we supported the Fair Work Australia case that is delivering from 1 December substantial pay rises of between 23 and 45 per cent to 150,000 of Australia’s lowest paid workers - significantly around 120,000 of these workers are women.
“It was this Labor Government who allowed the case to be brought to the independent umpire through our introduction of the Fair Work Act and we are committed to meeting our share of the costs associated with the historic decision.
“That’s a commitment of around $3 billion - and this Labor Government will continue to support this increase at every step of the way as it is phased in.
“We have also introduced major reforms on equal opportunity in the workplace, which set out a contemporary response to the challenges women face today.
“These reforms in the Equal Opportunity for Women in the Workplace Amendment Bill 2012 focus on equal pay - recognising that closing the gender pay gap is central to achieving equality.

“The Government is looking forward to the passage of the legislation through the Senate as soon as possible, ensuring genuine and sustained progress towards gender equality,” Ms Collins said.
“The new Act also highlights shared caring responsibilities as an issue central to the achievement of gender equality.

“Research shows that men want to help more with caring responsibilities, particularly with children, but are limited by barriers including “family bread-winner” responsibilities, and inflexible workplaces.
“The Australian Government recognises that more equal sharing of paid work and care enables greater workforce participation for women, improving women’s capacity to provide for themselves and their families and to save for a financially secure retirement.
“It means also that men can spend more time with their children and celebrate being a father every day.
“The Australian Government has introduced a number of practical supports and initiatives to support women and men balance paid work and caring and to make progress towards gender equality.
“The introduction of the historic Paid Parental Leave Scheme gives eligible working parents up to 18 weeks Paid Parental Leave at the rate of the national minimum wage, currently around $606 a week or $10,917 for 18 weeks before tax.
“From 1 January 2013, Dad and Partner Pay will give eligible fathers and partners two weeks’ pay at the rate of the national minimum wage.
“A dedicated payment for fathers and partners will encourage their involvement and send a strong signal that taking leave to care for children is part of the normal course of work and family life for both parents.
“We have strengthened protections against discrimination by amending the Sex Discrimination Act 1984 to make it unlawful to discriminate on the ground of family responsibilities for both women and men.
“Women and men also need opportunities to make genuine choices about their participation in the economy, community and at home.”
Source: Department of Families, Housing,
Community Services and Indigenous Affairs:
Posted by mums@work: