IoD comments on Nick Clegg's speech on Women and Work

13 November 2012

Commenting on the announcements on maternity and paternity leave and the right to request flexible working made by the Deputy Prime Minister today, Simon Walker, Director General of the Institute of Directors, said: 

“The IoD supports the Deputy Prime Minister’s efforts to release the full potential of women in the workplace. We agree that this is not just a question of equality, but also of economic necessity. IoD members want to be accommodating to their staff, and to work with mothers and fathers in sharing leave after they have had a child. Being able to split leave flexibly will be attractive to parents, but will inevitably increase uncertainty for employers, who must be given suitable notice beforehand.

“We are pleased that the Government has listened to those in business who were concerned about increasing the amount of dedicated leave for fathers. Any extra leave would clearly have been an additional burden for employers. The more time parents take off, the more difficult it is for employers, particularly small ones, to manage the disruption.

“IoD members recognise the benefits of flexible working and have had policies for it for some time. But flexible working is not suitable for every employee or every business. Extending the right to request does not change this, it only creates more unnecessary form-filing and wasted time. This move runs counter to the Government’s drive to reduce the burden of regulation on business.”


Contacts for further comments or to arrange interviews:

Mark Wallace
Head of Media Relations
Institute of Directors, 116 Pall Mall, London SW1Y 5ED
+44 (0)20 7451 3263
+44 (0)7764 883 417  

Edwin Morgan
Media Relations Manager
Institute of Directors, 116 Pall Mall, London SW1Y 5ED
+44 (0)20 7451 3392
+44 (0)7814 386 243

Notes to editors

  • The Institute of Directors (IoD) was founded in 1903 and obtained a Royal Charter in 1906. The IoD is a non-party political organisation with approximately 38,000 members in the United Kingdom and overseas. Membership includes directors from right across the business spectrum – from media to manufacturing, e-business to the public and voluntary sectors. Members include CEOs of large corporations as well as entrepreneurial directors of start-up companies.
  • The IoD provides an effective voice to represent the interests of its members to key opinion-formers at the highest levels. These include Government ministers and their shadows, parliamentary committee members, senior civil servants and think-tanks. IoD policies and views are actively promoted to the national, regional and trade media. Follow us on Twitter to get the IoD’s reaction on business and public policy issues.
  • The IoD offers a wide range of business services which include business centre facilities, with ten UK centres (three in London, one each in Reading, Birmingham, Cardiff, Manchester, Nottingham, Norwich, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Belfast) and one in Paris, conferences, networking events, virtual offices, issues-led guides and literature, as well as free access to business information and advisory services. The IoD places great emphasis on director development and has established a certified qualification for directors – Chartered Director – as well as running specific board and director-level training and individual career mentoring programmes.

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