Can a more flexible jobs market raise the status and pay of part-time workers?

IES contributors: Edney C, Muir D, Williams M |   | Timewise | Nov 2022

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The last decade has seen growing recognition that flexible working is good for business and good for people. There has also been change in the workplace, with the new trend towards hybrid patterns for office workers since the pandemic. Yet there has still not been a significant shift towards good flexible work becoming the norm for all. And the situation at the point of hire lags far behind workplace practice on flexibility, creating barriers to progression for people who can’t work a full-time, 9-5 schedule.

At the same time, the UK is facing a labour market crisis with demand far outstripping the supply of candidates, and a cost of living crisis that is hitting hard for low income households.

This report sets out how the lack of flexible jobs at the point of hire, in particular part-time opportunities, traps certain groups of people out of work or in low-pay – parents, older workers and people with disabilities (our 'priority groups') and why many employers are still resistant to offering flexibility from the point of hire, and look at what interventions might catalyse change.