Claire Braund, Executive Director of Women on Boards, says the term ‘part-time work’ should be removed from the workforce vocabulary because of the destructive effect it has on people’s careers. Ms Braund is on a campaign to have the term ‘part-time’ replaced by ‘working flexibly at X per cent’.
“This would start to change the perception that part-time workers are somehow less serious about their work and career and just there to do the job and go home,” she said.
“The reality is often very different with many employers knowing that so -called part-time workers are efficient, focused and often doing four days work and being paid for three. Unfortunately women are the most marginalised by this form of employment as they constitute 70.4% of all part-time employees* in the Australian workforce.”
Ms Braund suggests that using the term ‘working flexibly at X per cent’ for everyone – whether they be working at 150, 100 or 50 per cent – would help with the cultural transition to more flexible workplaces that integrated with the lives of their male and female employees.
“Whether we like it or not there are still a whole range of issues in the workplace where there is a gender gap – and this one of them.”
How to get to grips with this gender gap will be the focus of a series of workshops and business lunches being hosted by Women On Boards around Australia in August. The ThinkWomen 2011 business lunch will take a fresh look at building a culture where diverse groups can thrive and contribute to policies, practices and people that make a difference.
Cara Morton, Accenture’s Managing Director of Finance and Performance Management Consulting, will also share her leadership story including being mentored by Catriona Noble, the CEO of McDonalds in Australia on the Business Council of Australia’s ‘C Suite Project’ mentoring scheme.
For more information visit the website at: www.thinkwomen.com.au
* Source: ABS, Cat. 6202.0, Labour Force, Australia, Status by Sex – Trend, Table 1, April 2011′
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