Greater variation in working patterns is one of the ‘Megatrends’ identified by the UK’s Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) in a report published last week.
As well as part-time working opportunities growing, the number of homeworkers has increased from 2.3m in 2007 to 3.5m in 2012. Technology is further enabling new forms of work organisation, such as global ‘spot markets’ for freelance work, such as that offered by Mechanical Turk.
In the last 30 years, the CIPD said part-time work, chiefly driven by women, has become more important. However, it is the increasing share of part-time work among men that has been responsible for growth in the overall share of part-time work.
The CIPD said the employment relationship has become “less homogenous” and full-time, 9 to 5 jobs with no end point are not as common as in the past. The proportion of full-time permanent employees has remained at 60% since 1997, with a dip between 2008 and 2010 – thought to be the involuntary result of the recession.
The CIPD also said that people are staying in their jobs longer and that this trend began before the recession, suggesting it is not just a consequence of nervousness about job security.
Peter Cheese, CIPD chief executive, said HR professionals need to find solutions to changing needs: “The pace of change today is unprecedented. The future of work, the changing nature of the workforce, and the organisation and culture of the workplace are among the biggest challenges facing organisations and their leaders, and if HR doesn’t provide the answers, they’ll find them elsewhere.”
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