Thousands of professionals in the UK working part-time hours

Part-time work is not just for low level jobs, a new survey has shown.

Timewise, a UK-based jobs website dedicated to professional part-time jobs, has found that one in ten part-time workers are earning more than GBP40,000 a year on a full-time equivalent basis. This amounts to 650,000 people across the UK working fewer hours in high-earning positions.

The poll of 2,000 workers also revealed, however, that there is still a stigma attached to working part-time, with more than a third of senior part-time workers admitting that they would never describe their hours as “part-time” but prefer to say they work “flexibly”. One in seven even let colleagues assume that they work full-time hours.

Lower down the payscale part-time work can mean low-skilled, low-paid jobs, but Timewise found that some high earners make the choice to go part-time because they enjoy working fewer hours and are satisfied with their part-time salary. The two top reasons given for working part-time hours were having this flexibility and looking after children.

Timewise founder Karen Mattison commented that thousands of senior professionals at British businesses are working at the top of their game, on a part-time basis, because they want to.

“People say part-time and senior can’t be done, but thanks to employers who get the business benefits of hiring talented people on a part-time basis, there are now part-time finance directors, h?eads of communications, even part-time chief executives out there,” she added.

Figures released yesterday by the Office for National Statistics show that a majority of people working beyond the state pension age are on part-time hours, although men are much more likely than women to be in senior positions. Around two-thirds of older men work in jobs classed as higher skilled, such as property managers or sales directors, but almost two-thirds of older women who are still in work hold lower skilled jobs such as cleaning, retail or care work.