Part time jobs have always existed but in reality, they are usually few and far between. Whilst there has been a steady increase of candidates calling in over the past few years requesting part-time hours, I’ve certainly noticed a marked increase over the past 12 months. For any part-time advertisement that we place we are well and truly inundated with candidates and plenty being really top quality candidates.
Who is in the market for part time jobs?
There is a very high volume of Mums (and Dads!) keen to stay in the workforce, who are seeking flexibility with their working hours. Childcare costs are escalating and there is a fine line between what they can earn in a day versus putting the child in childcare. Working part-time often helps with this balance and means they keep one foot in the workforce (e.g. helps keep their skills up and in addition it can better their chances of being considered for full time roles down the track).
Additionally, there are a vast number of people studying and they too are requesting work around their study hours.
Let’s be blunt – Sydney is a rat race and it can be exhausting! I’ve had lots of people who have spent the majority of their working life in full time work (sometimes up to 50-60 hours a week). They’re still ready to give a lot to a business, but they are looking for a work life balance. Working either a 4 day week or even a 9 day fortnight will help with their well being goals.
People can be dealing with all sorts of personal matters – e.g. caring for elderly parents, which can affect their ability to commit to full time work.
So, what are the benefits to the employer?
One of the main aspects to consider is the financial side of things, as this can be dramatic, particularly for smaller businesses. When you take into account that for every day the person is not working the business saves 20% on the salary, it can be an attractive option. The wage bill for many companies can be one of their highest costs. Without a doubt, there are many roles that must be performed on a full-time basis. However, support roles are key ones that can, at times, be under taken part-time – often with virtually the same output as a full time employee.
Quality part-time work is hard to fine, so when I place a candidate in a part-time role, I find that they are generally extremely appreciative and therefore loyal to that employer for the opportunity; for that reason, the candidate often stays for the longer term. As all business owners know, longevity of a team pays off in many ways.
When a part-timer can be flexible with the days they work, it can be very beneficial for a company to have adaptive support for the business in line with the peaks and troughs.
Job share arrangements (e.g. sharing a week of work between 2 people) can be a fantastic solution for clients looking to bring two different skill sets into the business. E.g. 2 x Office Managers, one might be better with staff management, the other with business finances – between the two people they handle the main administration workload and also add value by bringing in additional skills (that are not required all day, every day).
Reception roles are perfect for a job share arrangement – particularly if there has been high turnover in the role. Truth be told, whilst reception roles are critical to a business, many are simply not that exciting, nor do they offer any career progression. So finding a candidate willing to stick it out for the long haul can be a challenge. Two great part-timers e.g. 2.5 days each or 2/3 days can be an excellent solution. A part-timer will often be happier to take on these types of duties, for a longer period of time and as mentioned earlier, will often be loyal and appreciative of the opportunity.
Ultimately what we find is that a candidate is willing to be more flexible on the actual role e.g. take on something that doesn’t challenge them as much as they may like because the option of part-time outweighs other aspects. For an employer, that may mean they are getting and paying for someone who has a lot more experience and skills that the job requires (on tap when, and if needed) for less money.
So as you can see there are NUMEROUS benefits for all parties involved when it comes to part-time employment. I can appreciate that it may not work for every role or every company; however, next time you are looking to hire a new support staff member maybe stop to consider all options.
Feel free to call Naomi Marshall directly on 9271 0011 should you have any questions – always there to help.
Naomi Marshall – Director
P: (02) 9271 0011
M: 0422 139 910