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"Silly hours" : facilitating more effective part-time work arrangements through job design

Smith, Natalie & McDonald, Paula K. (2012) "Silly hours" : facilitating more effective part-time work arrangements through job design. In 26th AIRAANZ Conference 2012 : Re-organising Work, 8 – 10 February 2012, Grand Chancellor Hotel, Surfers Paradise, QLD.

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      Abstract

      Part-time employment presents a conundrum in that it facilitates work-life priorities, while also, compared to equivalent full-time roles, attracting penalties such as diminished career prospects and lower commensurate remuneration. Recently, some promising theoretical developments in the job/work design literature suggest that consideration of work design may redress some of the penalties associated with part-time work. Adopting the framework of the Elaborated Model of Work Design by Parker and colleagues (2001), we examined this possibility through interviews with part-time professional service employees and their supervisors. The findings revealed that in organizations characterised by cultural norms of extended working hours and a singular-focused commitment to work, part-time roles were often inadequately re-designed when adapted from full-time arrangements. The findings also demonstrated that certain work design characteristics (e.g. predictability of work-flow, interdependencies with co-workers) render some roles more suitable for part-time arrangements than others. The research provides insights into gaps between policy objectives and outcomes associated with part-time work, challenges assumptions about the limitations of part-time roles, and suggests re-design strategies for more effective part-time arrangements.

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      ID Code: 48733
      Item Type: Conference Paper
      Keywords: Job Design, Work Design, Part-time, Professional Services, Flexible Work
      ISBN: 9780980608540
      Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > BUSINESS AND MANAGEMENT (150300) > Industrial Relations (150306)
      Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
      Current > Schools > School of Management
      Copyright Owner: Copyright 2012 [please consult the author]
      Deposited On: 20 Feb 2012 09:49
      Last Modified: 18 Jul 2012 02:16

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