In many ways New Jersey is considered to be one of the most progressive states in the nation, so you'd probably figure we'd be ranked as one of the best states for working mothers -- but a new study finds that is not the case.

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"New Jersey came in, all in all, at number 15 in the country in terms of being one of the best states for working moms," said John Kiernan, senior analyst at

He said the study ranked states in terms of their attractiveness to working mothers on 18 different metrics grouped into three categories: child care, professional opportunities and work-life balance.

"New Jersey's overall ranking is driven in large part by the state's 8th overall ranking in terms of child care," Kiernan said. "New Jersey has fairly cost-effective daycare, highly accessible pediatric services and pretty good public schools. Working mothers essentially have the reassurance of knowing their kids are being well taken care of, and it's not breaking the bank while they are at work."

However, when it comes to the professional opportunities category that compared men and women, New Jersey slips. "New Jersey comes in at 31st in terms of the pay gap, and 29th in terms of the ratio between male and female executives," Kiernan said.

He added the Garden State ranks 14th in the country for work-life balance for moms, which factors in parental leave policies, the length of the average woman's work day and their average commute times.

"While New Jersey mothers on average spend a relatively long amount of time at work and in their cars commuting, there are really helpful policies at the state level that make things helpful, for new parents especially," Kiernan said.