Aecom launches term-time-only contracts to lure parents back to work

American engineering giant Aecom has launched school-term-only contracts across a number of roles in Australia and New Zealand.

Aecom partnered with FlexCareers, an online jobs site, to encourage qualified engineers and scientists to return to an industry they may have left because it was impossible to balance work and primary care responsibilities.

Parents and grandparents, will be able to spend all 12 weeks of the school holidays with their children while receiving a monthly pro-rata salary.

The first 17 roles to be advertised will cover M&E engineering, acoustics, environmental planning, civil engineering, geotechnical and chemical engineering.

Existing employees will also be able to express an interest in changing their contracts to be part of the trial.

Todd Battley, Aecom’s chief executive for Australia and New Zealand, said: "There is a significant pool of talent who have stepped away from our industry because they were unable to nurture their families and their careers at the same time. That no longer has to be the case."

Helen Fraser, who is leading the initiative for Aecom, said: "I regularly speak with women who express the challenges they face during school holidays and there is no doubt that many women stop working because it is just too hard to manage the 12 weeks of school holidays per year.

"The pilot scheme initially gives Aecom 12 months to test and refine it with our clients, our people and professional women who have not been actively looking for work in the infrastructure sector.

"We are confident that it will appeal to both men and women with caring responsibilities."

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