Career break returner programmes launched across public sector

30 August 2017

New initiatives have been launched to help people back to work after a career break, to boost skills, and to close the gender pay gap.

The returner programmes – part of the £5 million fund announced in this year’s budget – are formal schemes offered by employers to provide training and support to people who have taken time out of the workplace. The Government Equalities Office will be establishing four new returner schemes across the public sector.

They will be open to women and men, with the aim of giving people who have taken career breaks the opportunity to refresh their skills and build professional networks.

According to research by PwC, addressing the career break penalty could provide a £1.7 billion boost to our annual economic output. For female professionals, that could increase the annual earnings of that group by an average of £4,000 per woman.

Later this year, returners will be able to apply to programmes for social workers, allied health professionals, and civil servants. It is part of the government’s work to support parents and carers returning to work, build home-grown skills, and close the gender pay gap.

Read more from GOV.UK.