CHICAGO—The struggle to balance career and family starts in the earliest stages of parenthood. So says CareerBuilder’s annual study of working moms. But a virtual office could help.

The survey shows that 26 percent of working moms who have given birth to a child in the last three years reported they did not take the full maternity leave allowed by their company—and 10 percent took two weeks or less. Virtual offices can allow women more time to stay at home without missing out on work they deem important.

That’s vital, given that competitive work environments and demanding positions may be causing more women to reduce their time off from work after delivery. While 44 percent of working moms who've had a child in the last three years reported taking more than eight weeks of maternity leave, 12 percent said they took two weeks or less. Forty percent were off work for six weeks or less.

How much time do working moms get to spend with their families? Not as much as they’d like. In fact, women feel the pressure of splitting time between the office and home—and they want more time to balance both. Twenty-five percent of working moms feel they have to choose between their children and a successful career—and 24 percent report they have missed three or more significant events in their children's lives in the last year due to work obligations.

When asked how much time they're able to spend with their children during the work week, half of working moms said they average around four hours of quality time each day. However, nearly 30 percent reported they get to spend two hours or less with their children each day.

Virtual offices can’t make up for all the woes of an overworked mother. But virtual offices can give a working mom another arrow in her quiver as she attempts to hit the bulls eye, or sweet spot, between work and life. Virtual offices can allow mom to be at home more without missing out on important work.