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Back to School 2021

How Iterable Parents are Navigating Back-to-School Season

As students embark on a new school year, parents—many of whom adjusted to working or going to school from home during the pandemic—are confronted with a back-to-school season that looks very different from last year’s.

To see just how the parents at Iterable have adapted to this back to school season, we surveyed members of our Parent and Caregivers Affinity Group with children of school age, and found the following insights:

  • 92% of respondents’ children are participating in in-person learning this school year and 7% of respondents’ children are participating in hybrid learning (combination of remote and in person)
  • 53% of respondents did not have to adjust their working style this back to school season
  • The most common response to how Iterable supports working parents was about flexibility in the work day in order to be able to do drop-offs and pick-ups

Iterable’s SVP of Sales, Americas Jan Zeman is a father of three and believes that balance is key as a working parent. “My wife and I are both professionally-driven people. Finding balance is challenging. We love raising our kids and are on the same page about priorities, both as professionals and as parents. We actively invest in our family while also pursuing our careers. Iterable’s monthly Balance Days, plus the flexibility to work from home, have been really helpful.”

Adopting parenting-first policies in your organization can be a huge boost in morale for parents and immensely helpful during a stressful time. Back to school can be an exciting time, though, so here’s what our parents have to say about this year’s back to school season.

Words of Wisdom from the Iterable Parents Affinity Group

Here at Iterable, we are committed to being people-centric. One way we focus on building community and connection as a team is through our Affinity Groups, which are created and run by employees who share a common community or identity, and they play a vital role in ensuring an inclusive environment where all are valued and empowered to succeed.

Let’s hear from members of our Parent and Caregiver Affinity Group about how they’re navigating this back to school season!

Do you have any back to school special traditions?

“Two scoops of ice cream after school on the first day!” – Kory O’Rourke, Workplace Specialist

“Heading down to school the day before to see class lists posted on the windows of the multi-purpose room. Always exciting to see who the teacher and classmates will be.” – Neil Smith, Senior Director of Technical Support

“No special traditions besides a treat after their first day (going out to dinner, getting ice cream or something like that).” – Heather Hafner, Manager of Customer Success

“We like to do a “spring cleaning” type of clean up in my kids’ bedrooms and organize their work stations.” – Matt Greenbaum, Sr. Demand Generation Marketing Manager

“My little guy already went back to school, but on the first day of school, he always gets donuts from his favorite donut shop.” – Chantel Green, Senior Agency Relations Manager

Back-to-School for Chantel Green's Son

Chantel’s son serving “blue steel”—ready for the first day of school!

“Buying a new backpack.” – Enrico Capitan, Manager of Solutions Architecture

Compared to last year’s back to school season (fall 2020), what were the main differences this year?

“Kids were not in person on the first day last year—so, first day photos were in pajamas!” – Kory O’Rourke, Workplace Specialist

“So happy my kids are in school all day, getting regular in-person instruction. Our administration in our New Jersey town has done a fantastic job of managing the pandemic.” – Stephanie Colleton, Enterprise Customer Success Manager

“Last year was fully remote on Zoom. Learning was facilitated by a teacher, and parents were required to shepherd their kids through the various activities and help them maintain their focus. It was difficult and energy-intensive. It also felt lonely at times. This year (second grade and kindergarten) is in-person. School is back to being fun for all involved.” – Matt Greenbaum, Sr. Demand Generation Marketing Manager

Matt's daughters ready to go back to school

Matt’s kids are smiling wide, ready to go!

“Starting school earlier, commuting, and learning in-person vs. on the screen are a few main differences. In-person learning makes it easier to ask questions, share thoughts, hands-on experiments; and there’s more opportunity to practice and play sports more which helps build motivation and is a stress reliever.” – Rebecca Chow, Enterprise Customer Success Manager

How did your working style change due to this back to school season?

“Have to block time for drop off and pick up (about 1 hour round trip for both). Working at Iterable allows me to block my calendar and have the ability to do these drop offs and pick ups.” – Heather Hafner, Manager of Customer Success

Heather's sons ready for school

Lookin’ sharp! Heather’s crew is pumped for some in-person learning.

“I start working at 8:00am and have a quick lunch at noon. Then I take a break at 3:30pm to pick up my oldest son and reconnect at 4:30-5pm until 6-7pm (CT).” – Osman Romero, Senior Software Engineer

In a few words, how does Iterable support you as a parent?

“The ability to work from home several days a week, the incredible support of my manager who is always telling me that health and family come first, and the support of other parents in the company make a big difference to my stress levels.” Kory O’Rourke, Workplace Specialist

Kory's son going back to school!

“I am and always will be the optimist. The hoper of far-flung hopes, and the dreamer of improbable dreams.” – 11th Doctor

“Great benefits package, supportive co-workers, putting the value of Balance front and center. I am never made to feel guilty for putting kids before work when needed.” – Neil Smith, Senior Director of Technical Support

“Iterable is great about supporting chaotic scheduling as well as having to randomly log off to help kids with really big feelings about being back to school (especially now that the COVID outbreaks and exposures are happening).” – Wayne Coburn, Director of Product

“I never have to choose between my job and my child. I have had to make tough parenting choices before as a single mother, due to the demands of a rigid work schedule. Iterable has never made (and I am confident would never make) me feel like I had to miss a school performance or midday class party. I would be supported in what I needed to do for my family, all the while being trusted to complete the work I needed to. Being an Iterator has allowed me to show up for my child in a way that many single parents aren’t able to do, and I’m eternally grateful for the role this company plays in supporting not only myself, but my 7-year-old son. He’s having the type of childhood that I once believed wouldn’t be possible for him due to single parenthood and the demands of an inflexible work schedule.” – Chantel Green, Senior Agency Relations Manager

Practicing Balance and Trust as Parents (and Iterators)

Trust and Balance are two of Iterable’s values and are exemplified in the way working parents do the best work of their careers at Iterable. We’re committed to designing a hybrid, people-first future and providing benefits and flexibility to invest in the wellbeing of our employees. A few specific company-wide policies Iterable implemented to support parents and caregivers include fertility and adoption assistance, balance days, and unlimited PTO.

This back to school season, we’re rooting for all parents, caregivers, and students venturing into another year of learning and growth!

To learn more about Iterable’s company culture and benefits, please visit our Culture page.

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