Researchers from the Institute for Social Innovation and Impact, University of Northampton, have been engaging with the co-founders (Kathryn Tyler and Nikki Cochrane) of leading social enterprise Digital Mums, as well as with the Head of Marketing Richard Miranda and a sample of the working ‘mums’.
Digital Mums have kindly agreed to be one of the case study social enterprises (SEs) in the research being undertaken on New Generation Social Enterprises (as part of the FP7 funded Enabling the Flourishing and Evolution of Social Entrepreneurship for Innovative and Inclusive Societies project (EFESEIIS)) and the research undertaken has included interviews with the co-founders, staff and beneficiaries.
Digital Mums is one of the UKs leading digitally-based social enterprises. The company offers support to mothers who are out of work, by providing them with the training and opportunity to become social media managers for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). This 21st century digital working model allows the ‘Digital Mums’ to work flexibly, at times to suit them and from anywhere in the world (including their homes). The company was founded in 2013 as Hackney Social by Kathryn and Nikki as a social media management company for SMEs and morphed into Digital Mums in 2014.
The inspiration for the business model came from Kathryn and Nikki’s experiences of seeing their own mothers unemployed and unable to work due to family commitments. Interestingly and much to many people’s surprise, they are not mums themselves, but they do not see why in the modern digital world gender inequality should persist in the workplace. Today Digital Mums has over 40 mums working as social media managers and is supporting over 150 students through their ‘Live Learning Programme’ and they are targeting significant growth over the next 5 years.
Digital Mums began with a simple idea: there are a huge number of amazing and talented women out there who are unable to work due to family commitments and that freelance digital social media management provides the flexibility, reward and career opportunities that they need. In taking this innovative approach to working practices and digital technology, Digital Mums is truly a social business for the 21st century.