A full load part time

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Less days but longer hours –

CARA JENKIN Ca­reerOne Edi­tor

PART-TIME work­ers are putting in more hours each week to get their work done and many are still com­plet­ing a full-time work­load, re­search shows.

Part-time em­ploy­ees are de­fined as work­ing less than 35 hours a week.

Aus­tralian Bureau of Statis­tics fig­ures show part-time em­ploy­ees in 2000 were paid for work­ing an av­er­age of 18.1 hours a week.

Ten years later, statis­tics show work­ers are be­ing paid for an av­er­age of 22 hours a week.

Re­search un­der­taken by na­tional work­place devel­op­ment group The 100% Project re­veals more busi­nesses are of­fer­ing part-time jobs with more hours than a decade ago, through to nine-day fort­nights or four-day weeks, to pro­vide work­ers with flex­i­bil­ity while also meet­ing busi­ness de­mand.

But it also re­veals many part-time staff also are work­ing longer hours, com­plet­ing full-time work­loads in less time.

Board chair­woman Frances Feenstra says there is a false per­cep­tion in the work­ing com­mu­nity that many part-timers are not do­ing their share of the work and are be­ing passed over for pro­mo­tions be­cause of it.

She says the group’s re­search shows 82 per cent of full-time men and 81 per cent of full-time women be­lieve em­ploy­ees who work part­time are less mo­ti­vated and com­mit­ted to their ca­reers.

But part-time work­ers are do­ing more work than many be­lieve, she says.

‘‘The ma­jor­ity of both males, or 62.5 per cent, and fe­males, or 75.7 per cent, agree that of­ten peo­ple work­ing part-time end up do­ing a full-time role within part-time hours, oth­er­wise known as do­ing more with less,’’ she says.

‘‘Gen­er­ally the view is that they are squeez­ing five days into four days be­cause peo­ple don’t want to rock the boat.

‘‘The re­sults also sug­gest that part-time work­ers are of­ten not taken as se­ri­ously as full-time work­ers and can be per­ceived as un­mo­ti­vated and not com­mit­ted to their job or ca­reer.

‘‘This study re­in­forces the ex­is­tence of stig­mas as­so­ci­ated with part-time work as key bar­ri­ers which are im­pact­ing women’s pro­gres­sion into se­nior lead­er­ship – specif­i­cally the re­sults show­ing that part-time work lim­its an in­di­vid­ual’s pro­mo­tion op­por­tu­nity.’’

The re­search found 43 per cent of men and 33.8 per cent of women be­lieve when a worker moves to a part-time role, their job is re­designed to en­sure re­quire­ments can be met in fewer hours.

She says some part-time staff work week­ends and af­ter hours to get their tasks done and go the ex­tra mile.

Car­clew Youth Arts hol­i­day pro­gram co-or­di­na­tor Nar­isha Cash, 31, has been work­ing the na­tional part­time av­er­age of 22 hours a week for two years.

She is re­quired to work the 22 hours to com­plete her work but was able to ne­go­ti­ate her work­ing times of 9am to 3pm, Mon­day to Thurs­day.

‘‘It al­lows me to pick my child up from school and work on other per­sonal projects go­ing on,’’ she says.

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