In the United States, about 70 percent of mothers with children under the age of 18 also do paid work, and in 46 percent of households in the U.S., women are the primary breadwinners.
But the traditional 9-to-5 workplace is unfriendly to anyone who takes care of children, and in the United States, that’s still mostly likely to be mothers. Finding a job that supports both career growth and family responsibilities can be a challenge, but there are companies out there that make a point to support moms who also do paid work. Further, there are jobs where women seem to be happier than others, which is what we set out to find for this story.
We queried our dataset to find the job titles where working mothers report the highest job satisfaction. Here’s what we found.
21 of the best jobs for moms, as rated by working moms
Real estate agent
Real estate agents often have the freedom to set their own schedules, which means working around school hours and family activities.
The earning potential for real estate agents is also pretty solid. Depending on your location, how much you work, and your commission, you can earn between $60,000 and $120,000 each year. Those who own their own firms or close luxury deals can pull down significantly more.
Real estate agents need to be licensed in the state(s) where they work, which typically means a training course and a licensure test. There are plenty of certifications that can help you specialize and boost your earnings.
Talent acquisition manager / recruiting manager / corporate recruiter / recruiter
Recruiters can be employed by a specific company to recruit only for them, or they may be employed by a recruiting agency that contracts with a list of companies. If you’ve got a steady list of clientele or want all the flexibility you can get, you can choose to go independent and start your own business.
Recruiting managers will need to have broad networks, impeccable people skills (basically no conversation has ever intimidated you), and a knack for understanding both employer and employee needs.
Recruiters spend a good deal of time on the phone and in meetings with potential candidates, which makes this job very flexible and doable from just about anywhere.
The bosses out there rank their job satisfaction pretty highly. CEOs might lead companies or have started companies of their own. When you’re sitting in the executive’s seat, you can set your own schedule (though your hours will be long) and work when and where you need to. Your earnings are also likely to be high.
If you make it to this seat, just remember how you can positively influence the workplace for working moms in your organization: Companies, This Is What Mom-Friendly Benefits Look Like.
Licensed social worker
Social work, while rewarding, can be a draining field of work. Social workers are needed in a wide range of settings—schools, hospitals, public health organizations, foster care and adoption agencies, mental health clinics, human services organizations, settlement houses, substance abuse clinics and rehabilitation facilities, and more. Social workers help the public when they need it most and can even be major influencers in public policy and social change.
Social workers have master's degrees (usually an MSW) and are licensed to work in their state and sometimes in a specific area of practice, like child services or substance abuse.
Marketing skills can be parlayed just about anywhere. This is a flexible skill that can help you land full-time or part-time work, and depending on the company you work for, you may be able to negotiate flexible work hours or a remote working arrangement.
Check out marketing jobs in tech and finance, fields where women report high job and salary satisfaction.
Like a career in marketing, jobs in communications exist across all industries, so whether you want to work in tech, finance, nonprofits, health care, media, government, or education—there is probably a communications job for you.
Communications professionals need to be confident, well-spoken, tech-savvy, good writers, and great crisis managers (hello, moms).
Business analyst / data analyst
Working moms who hold data and business analytics jobs report high job satisfaction. Jobs like these can be incredibly high-paying (depending on your credentials and experience, you could easily pull down six figures) and can often be done remotely.
This is a very flexible skill that can be used across all industries, thanks to the data revolution. While not all data analysts have STEM degrees, many of the highly paid ones do. If you’d like to beef up the education portion of your resume, check out our list of companies that offer tuition reimbursement programs.
While financial analysts work with data, their jobs are slightly different than business analysis and pure data analysis. Financial analysts work in banks, pension funds, investment banks, and the like and advise individuals and organizations on investment decisions.
Analysts in this field can bring in as much as $100,000 depending on your employer. Seasoned pros can pull down even more.
Event coordinator / event marketing & promotions coordinator / event planner
Event planner is one that we were surprised to see on our list of the best jobs for moms—considering your work must revolve around unmovable events—but our users with children rate this title quite highly. If you’re an independent event planner or are self-employed, you can take on as much or as little work as you like.
Event planners are highly organized professionals with impeccable taste, killer people skills, and the ability to keep cool when the best laid plans go awry (OK, now we’re seeing why moms are so good at this).
While you don’t necessarily need to have a specific degree for this job, many event planners have specific licenses, like the CSEP, or certified special events planner.
Attorneys are some of the highest earners on this list of the best jobs for moms. Lawyers don’t exactly have the lightest workloads or even flexible schedules (depending on your area of practice), but the pay is excellent for most and the results can be oh-so-satisfying.
Lawyers working in the public sector make roughly $50,000–$80,000 annually, while those in private practice can pull down a sweet $120,000–$250,000.
Social media manager / community manager
Social media managers and community managers can work from anywhere. You’ll need serious visual design taste and skills as well as some marketing, PR, and writing abilities. There are also plenty of online and classroom-based trainings for those interested in social media management if you need to beef up your resume and stay current.
Just about every brand, organization, company, hospital, store, restaurant (the list goes on forever) has a social media presence or wants a better one. With a solid social media presence of your own, you can land a social media management job across all kinds of industries.
While community managers are involved in social media production, workers with this title likely influence social strategy and are involved in brand building initiatives.
The chief marketing officer (CMO) of a company is, of course, the organization’s most senior marketing professional. The second c-suite position on our list, working moms rate this job highly likely for many of the same reasons CEO is so highly rated—when you sit at the top, you can set your hours, work when and where you need to, and influence office culture. The pay isn’t too shabby either.
Moms who work as underwriters rank their job satisfaction highly as well. Underwriters evaluate risk for insurance companies, banks, mortgage lenders, health companies, etc. They’re the ones making decisions and recommendations about whom should receive a loan or be insured.
Underwriters typically have four-year degrees in fields like economics, business, finance, or mathematics. While you won’t need any special certifications to begin, you will likely need more training and certifications to climb the ladder.
Program managers are excellent multitaskers (again...moms). They oversee a portfolio or set of clients and/or projects and often have a lot of people reporting to them—such as project managers or coordinators.
The reason this is a great job for working moms is that it can be highly satisfying (if you love to check off boxes, this is for you) and work hours are often flexible. While your hours may be long, many program managers can do their jobs remotely, so you may find it a lot easier to coordinate professional and family obligations at the same time.
School counselors advise students (usually high school, sometimes college) in matters regarding college or career trajectory. They deal with college admissions and applications, financial aid, and other concerns, like grades and college preparation.
Moms may take to this job because its hours reflect school schedules, making it easier to do paid work and also drop off and pick up the kids from school.
School counselors or college advisors don’t necessarily have a specific type of degree, but most have college degrees and are well connected. Some schools may require you to have a master’s degree in a subject like education or psychology. Those who have worked in college admissions offices are uniquely qualified for this role.
Director of operations
Directors of operations are efficient, organized, and emotionally intelligent multitaskers, so it’s no wonder working moms love this role. They’re in charge of a company’s growth and profitability and deal with personnel issues, processes, production, expenses, and just about anything that affects a company’s bottom line. If you like to have a lot of influence (think setting the tone for the office) and like to manage a lot of tasks, operations is a great area for you.
This role is a track to the chief operating officer’s (or COO’s) chair—another c-suite role that could mean flexible hours and plenty of remote work.
Web developers are in high demand. They earn great pay and many of them work remotely. It’s also possible to pull in plenty of freelance work as a free agent. You’ll need serious technical coding chops, but with this being such a sought-after skill, nearly every college, tech school, community college, and coding school can help you build toward this career.
Web developers typically make six figures, with many earning more than $120,000. Moms like this job because most can set their own hours, earn great pay, and work remotely.
Training professionals are naturally great teachers. So if you come from an education background but want to earn more money or have a more flexible schedule, this is the career for you.
Training managers create training curricula and materials for companies that need to train employees on anything from how to sell a product to how to hire a new employee, use a software program, or even be better managers and coworkers.
While some training managers may need to travel to actually conduct training programs, this is one of the best jobs for moms because it’s a wonderfully versatile skill and much of the work can be done remotely.
Business consultant / consultant
Business consultants work famously long hours but are handsomely compensated. This six-figure job is highly rated by many moms likely because while the workload is heavy, the pay is solid and work is often remote. While some consultants work for large corporations like PricewaterhouseCoopers (3.6 stars) or Deloitte (3.7 stars), many chose to strike out on their own so they could choose their projects and schedules.
Consultants work across all industries, from accounting to business development, technology, operations, education, consumer products.
Human resources business partner / assistant director, human resources / HR manager
Human resources professionals are people people. They deal with personnel policies, employee retention, wellness initiatives, new employee onboarding, benefits, and even issues like company culture and morale, diversity, training, and employee mediation.
While moms working in human resources don’t need a specific degree, they’re good problem solvers, great listeners, fierce advocates, allies, and have a solid understanding of legal matters like pay discrimination, gender discrimination, sexual harassment. While the work can be heavy, human resources employees can be powerful agents for change and workplace improvement.
Software engineers are some of the highest-earning working moms on our list. This is one of the most employable skills on our list. Software engineers have a highly technical skillset, and most will need at least a four-year degree, with many having even more education.
Software engineers work across all kinds of industries and many can work remotely.
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