17th November 2020

Why you should offer Job Sharing

Research shows over 80% of UK job seekers select flexibility as a key criterion in evaluating roles advertised. In today's progressive workforce, finding the perfect person for the job doesn't always mean the right person is available full-time within standard working hours.

Job share opportunities make your business attractive to superb employees. Since just about every role can be adapted to job sharing, employers who offer agile working environments can hire exceptional staff without limiting their talent pool to only those candidates who are able to work full-time. 

Employees in job share roles are happier, and healthier, with a productive work-life balance that makes them want to work more effectively.

Hiring and retaining quality staff reduces costs, enhances productivity, improves continuity of service, keeps clients satisfied and builds a strong public image for your business. 

WHAT’S IN IT FOR YOU AS A BUSINESS? 

Job sharing is an accessible opportunity that applies well to most roles in all industries.

For businesses, this provides an avenue to retain career-driven staff who are looking to reduce their working hours, and widens the net of potential candidates when hiring for a new position. Full-time roles can be shared by two outstanding employees, bringing two sets of skills with double the experience for the same pay as one employee. 

High staff retention makes your company desirable to work for, which attracts stronger candidates from a sought-after talent pool. Reducing staff turnover ensures previous investments made into upskilling your staff through training is kept within your business. Hiring costs, and periods of low productivity often associated with training new staff, are eliminated. 

Job sharing is particularly compatible with returnship programmes, such as those following periods of illness or redundancy, which reduces workplace stigmatism for improved inclusivity. 

Historically, women are frequently under-represented in top-ranking senior positions. Job sharing fosters a sense of equal opportunities within the workplace by helping women balance their career goals with family life. This contributes towards reducing the gender pay gap and promotes greater gender equality.

Allowing staff to job share, rather than shrinking their position into a part-time job, maintains continuity and productivity. Job share tasks are always covered, giving clients uninterrupted service. Job share partners cover each other for holidays, fill in for each other if one person is off sick and always have first-hand support in emergencies. 

WHAT'S IN IT FOR YOUR EMPLOYEES? 

Flexible working in a job share capacity empowers employees to take control over their careers without compromising their work life balance. This improves mental health, promotes personal wellbeing and motivates driven employees to succeed. 

Job share partners are able to fully switch off on their days off, allowing them to arrive at work feeling focused and productive, without the stress of catching up on missed work or needing to stretch beyond their contracted hours. Individuals within job share teams are usually self-inspired to perform well, preferring to tie up loose ends themselves rather than leave excess work for their partner.

Job sharing offers an ideal opportunity for self-development and continuous career growth within a healthy, well-balanced, supportive work environment. 

WHERE HAS JOB SHARING WORKED WELL? 

Job sharing has a proven track record in all industries and is not limited to any particular types of roles or levels of seniority. It's equally effective in public-facing CEO roles as it is in junior administration or shift work. 

Ruth Hannant and Polly Payne, Directors General for Rail Group at the Department of Transport, oversee major public projects including the £7 billion Thameslink and £14.8 billion Crossrail programmes.

Helen Brown and Julia Hemmings, Partner Lawyers at Baker McKenzie, share a single client base. Having different personalities means they can always find a solution that works for every client. 

Sam White and Will McDonald, Group Public Policy & Sustainability Directors at Aviva, manage twenty staff across three teams. When surveyed, 95% of their employees supported their job share arrangement. 

At Zurich (enei Members), work is viewed as an activity rather than a place. All employees are offered tailored working conditions through FlexWork, allowing them to adjust their hours, place of work and way of working as needed. All new opportunities are advertised as part-time, full-time and job share positions. 

The Zurich model has seen over 70% of employees take advantage of flexible working, and a 45% increase in female applicants applying for senior roles. This has developed equal opportunities for women and identified Zurich as a global leader in progressive employment. 

WHERE DO YOU START TO OFFER JOB SHARING? 

More than half of all full-time employees would prefer having more flexibility over receiving a 5% pay rise, so the best way to reap the rewards of job sharing is to remain open to learning. Be flexible towards adapting your business model to suit changing needs. 

Create a company environment that's geared towards empowering people by establishing a supple attitude within senior managers and company leaders. Consider productivity as a KPI, rather than evaluating time spent at work.

Employees should be encouraged to take control of their own day and workflow. Talk to your employees to find out how job sharing can suit them. Offer clear guidance on finding the right partner and provide honest information about the benefits employees can expect. 

Evaluate your customer's needs to determine if you can better serve them outside of your standard hours. Make flexible working as easy as possible by investing in the right technology, and look for ways you can extend your hours of service through shift work. 

Advertise job share roles that can improve client experience in a way that also meets your employee's working needs. 

CONCLUSION 

Job sharing is a dynamic employment model with a proven success rate that can be applied to nearly every role. 

Companies offering job share positions are attractive to talented employees, resulting in a stronger workforce with lower costs and increased productivity. Employees in job share positions are able to progress their careers with reduced hours for a happy, healthy work life balance.

 

Article by Graham Joyce, Co-Founder of DuoMe - see more at www.duome.co