UK moves towards part-time work culture in wake of recession

The UK economy has lost nearly 1m full-time jobs after a dramatic shift to part-time working since the start of the recession, according to a report by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD).
The loss of full-time work has resulted in a drop of almost 10% in the number of men who are working more than 45 hours per week, the organisation’s audit of working practices found.
Most of the cut in take-home pay was suffered by male workers. Compared with men, fewer women who work more than 45 hours saw a drop in their hours.
Reporting “a marked shift to shorter working hours”, the CIPD said that the recession had resulted in both a fall in total employment and a shift to part-time work. Total employment was down 580,000 over the two years to spring 2010; part-time employment increased by 330,000.
A “modest and uneven” bounce-back in full-time work over the past year has increased the number of men working more than 45 hours a week, but not enough to make up for ground lost during the recession, the report said.
The CIPD said: “Talk of the UK’s ‘long-hours culture’ is misleading – a ‘mixed-hours culture’ is a more accurate description. In spring 2010 there were as many people in the UK working between 16 and 30 hours per week as were working 45 hours or more per week.”
Only four EU countries – Denmark, Ireland, the Netherlands and Sweden – had shorter average working weeks than the UK at the end of last year.
Photo courtesy of iStockphoto, © Slobo Mitic, Image #8302325
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