Fewer than one in ten ‘quality’ jobs offer the possibility of flexible hours.
A failure to recognise the prevalence of flexible working means that employers are overlooking up to 1.9 million qualified candidates, a report has warned.
The Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) surveyed parents, older people and disabled people to form the report. It found that 47% of respondents were looking for flexible work; this compared to just 6.2% of ‘quality’ vacancies that advertised flexible working as an option.
JRF quantified a quality job as one with a full-time equivalent salary of £19,500.
The report identified 1.9 million qualified people that are looking for flexible hours. To classify as qualified, a person must hold a National Qualifications (NQF) Level 3 or above. JRF also counted those with a trade apprenticeship.
Helen Barnard, head of analysis at JRF, said: “There are a lot of people who do not apply for jobs because they appear to be full-time and inflexible.”
“Whereas if you advertise jobs as ‘open to flexibility for the right candidate’ you can find there is a big pool of people out there who bring qualifications and commitment and are very often willing to go above and beyond,” she added.
JRF also found that overall, employers are more likely to use flexible working as a retention tool for existing staff than as an employee benefit offered at the point of recruitment.
Flexible working can take many forms: part-time, term-time, working from home, job shares, compressed hours and flexi-time. As long as your employees remain motivated and committed, allowing them to work for you on a schedule that also works for them can be great for your business.