Working from home and a toolkit for educating line managers all help support women as they go through the change.
To mark World Menopause Day, which falls on October 18 in 2021, Vodafone is making its menopause toolkit freely available for download. The toolkit was originally created so that line managers in the company would be better able to support employees going through the menopause. The toolkit is now available for use by everyone, including managers at other employers.
Research released back in March 2021 revealed that many women felt too embarrassed to ask for support in their workplaces. Since Vodafone made the toolkit available and encouraged staff to use it, Vodafone has already seen testimonials from several women.
Sam Kent, a Digital Care Advisor, said: “I already knew a lot of the stuff in the menopause toolkit, but I think it’s absolutely amazing. I gave a copy to my manager, and she’s super anyway, but after she read it, I think she actually understood a lot more about the trials that we go through.”
Jo Cracknell, a Client Sales Manager, added: “My line manager at the time was absolutely brilliant. He’s not one for emotion and I phoned him and just cried and he was absolutely amazing – he said just take what you need, take your time, keep in touch with me if you need anything give me a shout. There was absolutely no pressure or anything - he was brilliant. He had looked at the toolkit.”
Vodafone supports its women employees in other ways, such as with flexible working arrangements. Sam spoke about the advantages of working from home while going through menopause: “Psychologically working at home helps because there are fewer embarrassing moments. When I’m in a meeting and I’m having a hot flush I can just turn my video camera off so nobody sees me turn into a beetroot, or if sweat is pouring off my face and my hair looks like a poodle!
“I can also have the temperature how I need it at home – I like it a little bit on the cooler side. It’s just these little things that makes managing my menopause symptoms a lot easier.”
Vodafone is committed to being the best employer for women by 2025 through a range of initiatives and policies, from its global parental leave policy to its ReConnect programme helping women back into work after a career break.