Diversity recruitment specialist Capability Jane, and leading work-life balance organisationWorking Families, will today release the findings of a study into the feasibility of job sharing in senior management, client-facing and project-driven roles.
The research was sponsored by Centrica, Deloitte, DHL, Freshfields, Herbert Smith, KPMG and RBS and supported by a number of leading academic institutions and independent work-life experts. The study was prompted by the increasing desire amongst many women in senior roles to combine career development with reduced-hours working; and the need on the part of employers to retain and progress their female talent.
Key findings include:
- Nearly two thirds (61%) of senior women surveyed said they would like the opportunity to job share. Nine out of ten respondents said that having the ability to job share could mean the difference between staying with a company and leaving.
- There is a sound business case for job sharing to be promoted by employers. Whilst costs may be slightly higher than employing a single individual, the benefits, including retention of key personnel, absence cover and a focused and energetic team can easily outweigh these.
- Job sharing is already happening effectively at a senior level in large global organisations.
- Benefits cited by jobs sharers included: the ability to work in a big role on a reduced hours basis; career progression; the ability to switch off and hand over accountability; greater flexibility and work life balance; and having two heads focused on a single role.
- Job sharing, however, was found to be no panacea. Hard work and commitment, including out-of-hours communication with job share partners, and the need to go the extra mile in order to prove themselves, were key characteristics of successful job shares.
In addition, the study focused on capturing best practice recommendations for how to make job sharing successful at senior level, and creating a set of “toolkits”. These toolkits contain the essential frameworks, checklists and templates for organisations looking to set up an effective job share programme.
Copies of the research and information about the toolkits and other job share services are available from Working Families or Capability Jane.
Sara Hill, Managing Director of Capability Jane commented, “As diversity recruitment specialists we have seen a growing appetite for job sharing amongst women in key commercial roles. However, scepticism remains amongst managers who believe ‘it won’t work here’. With this project, based on sound research findings, we are setting out to dispel this myth, and to provide the tools and the evidence for organisations and individuals who want to make job sharing work.”
Sarah Jackson, Chief Executive of Working Families said, “We would encourage businesses to fully absorb the findings of this research, especially in the current economic climate. Working hours are on the increase, and the annual cost of presenteeism is greater than of absenteeism. So the need to think about the design and shape of work is paramount. Job sharing provides a unique opportunity to think about the design of roles, and about creating really effective ways of working.”
About Capability Jane - Founded in 2007, Capability Jane is a team of passionate, experienced professionals committed to building the marketplace for high quality, flexible careers and increasing the number of women in influential roles in business. We help a wide range of global and entrepreneurial employers tap into a pool of talented individuals seeking challenging and flexible career opportunities. Progressive organisations work with us to increase their pipeline of senior female talent through education programmes, flexible job design and targeted recruitment campaigns. To find out more about us visit: www.capabilityjane.com
About Working Families - Working Familiesis theUK’s leading work-life organisation. The charity supports and gives a voice to working parents and carers, whilst also helping employers create workplaces which encourage work-life balance for everyone . The Working FamiliesFreephone legal helpline for parents, carers and their advisers gives advice on employment rights and benefits. The helpline is run by a team of solicitors and advisers and has a Quality Mark from Community Legal Services. Call free on 0800 013 0313, text 07800 00 4722 or e-mail email@example.com. Website: www.workingfamilies.org.uk