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Quarter of working women’s careers impacted by menopause

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A quarter of women aged 45-65 who have gone through the menopause say the experience has negatively impacted their career.

For 27% of working women, they said they felt undervalued, while 20% said it caused negative feelings with their colleagues.

The research by Canada Life revealed employers were also found to be lacking in support at this time, with 41% of women reporting they had no help.

For 42%, they felt unable to talk to their line manager about their menopause experience. As such, one in 10 women (11%) said they considered leaving their job.

In order to feel better supported dealing with the menopause, 26% said they wanted improved sick leave policy, 23% valued flexible working rights and for 17%, they wanted access to support such as virtual GPs and mental health counselling.

A fifth said they would be more likely to stay with their current employer if they felt better supported with the menopause and the symptoms experienced.

‘Recruitment and retention issue if not handled compassionately’

Dan Crook, protection sales director at Canada Life, said: “Everyone experiences the menopause differently and some can have more severe symptoms than others, sometimes lasting for up to 12 years. Building awareness around the menopause is fundamental to normalising the topic in the workplace and society, allowing people to talk openly and seek support when needed. With more than one in four women feeling their career is negatively impacted by the menopause, this could quickly become a key recruitment and retention issue for employers if not handled openly and compassionately.

“Women experiencing the menopause are usually at the height of their careers and an asset that employers should work hard to keep. Almost a fifth of women said they would be more likely to stay with their employer if they felt better supported in the menopause and by making relatively simple changes such as improving sick leave policies and flexible working, employers can give their workforce the best chance of success. Virtual support services also have a key role to play through helping employees via the workplace and employers should take every opportunity to promote their use.”

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