Home News & eventsNews Flexible working? Only if you earn enough

Flexible working? Only if you earn enough

Published: 5 Oct 2016

Go Home on Time Day infographic

High earning parents who bank more than £70,000 a year are 47% more likely to work flexibly than those earning between £10,000 and £40,000.


Research carried out by charity Working Families to promote National Work Life Week (Oct 3-7) and today’s status as Go Home On Time Day (Oct 5) shows a direct correlation between salary and the ability to work flexibly.


The charity’s poll showed more than two thirds (69%) of working parents who earned more than £70,000 worked in a flexible way, while less than half (47%) of those earning more modest salaries between £10,000 and £40,000 worked flexibly.


Sarah Jackson, chief executive of Working Families, said:


“Families need time as well as money to thrive. But one shouldn’t depend on the other.


“We know flexible working makes business sense across the salary spectrum, so why should only the people who earn the most be able to reap the rewards?


“We want jobs at all levels to be advertised as flexible. And this should be the norm, rather than the exception.


“Everyone has the right to request flexible work patterns so we hope more employees – and employers – will use today’s status as Go Home On Time Day as an opportunity to explore the benefits.”


Working Families hopes businesses and employers, including the public sector and Government, will use its ‘happy to talk flexible working’ strapline on job adverts. This isn’t just a label. It means employers have genuinely thought about the best way to get a job done and opens up opportunities to a wider talent pool, hungry for the right job offering hours to suit life outside work. Businesses are much more likely to get the right person for the job and reap the rewards of increased productivity and engagement.


The charity’s poll also showed the majority of working parents regularly put in extra hours at work and that inflexible work commitments regularly interfered with precious family moments or essential parenting tasks.


  • More than half (55%) of working parents polled put in extra unpaid hours each week. A quarter said they worked at least five extra unpaid hours a week.


  • More than two thirds (68%) said their job interfered with their ability to take part in school or nursery milestones for their children, such as attending performances or parents’ evenings.


  • Nearly two thirds (62%) said work detrimentally affected the time they had to help children with homework.


  • More than half (56%) said it interfered with their ability to put their children to bed. One in five (20%) said this happened more than three times a week.



Follow Working Families on Twitter @WorkingFamUK with the campaign hashtag #TimeToRebalance and on Facebook.


Journalists requiring more information can contact Jenny Legg on 07725 619304 or jenny.legg@gmail.com


Unless otherwise stated, figures are taken from a survey commissioned by Working Families. The survey of 1,011 working parents of children aged under 18 was carried out by Opinium. Data was captured between August 17 and 26, 2016.

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