Stay at home mums untapped resource for IT sector

Loyalty and productivity higher than Gen Y wannabes

Organizations looking to beat the drought of IT staff should consider the "huge resource" in stay-at-home mothers, according to the director of a business intelligence software company.

Julie Overall is director of the Asia Pacific operations of Cyberscience Corporation, a BI software vendor headquartered in the UK.

Overall said there is an untapped resource for business IT staff among mothers who have had a child and are looking to re-enter the workforce.

A recent Cyberscience recruit is a stay-at-home mother who was hired for previous experience in project management.

"I can't afford to continue to train people," Overall said. "I have a valuable resource in stay-at-home mothers by being flexible."

When looking to hire, Overall was uncertain that a graduate who needed training would be loyal and stay with the company to justify a return on investment.

"Mothers have skills, but they may have been out of the market for a few years," she said. "She had project management skills and already after 15 days I have her working on paid work."

Overall said mothers working at home "do the hours" and she likes her staff to be contactable outside of business hours.

"The girls I have put in have worked out well, but I haven't put in any stay-at-home dads yet," she said. "Don't overlook men over 50 who have had a long career in business."

Overall believes she has found "the most loyal people" in stay-at-home mothers and "their productivity is 200 percent over a full timer".

"One went on a training course on her own time," she said.

"I don't want someone who is registered with a headhunter. I want to give them what they need and mix it with family life."

One resource Overall has looked at is the jobs portal.

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