An increasing number of companies are seeing the benefits of flexible working as listed below.
The Scottish Parliament has led the way in having more family-friendly working hours and holidays. But the reality of political life means that our elected representatives still have to attend many evening meetings and are expected to be ‘always available, anytime’ by phone, email or social media. As such, those with family commitments such as looking after children and elderly relatives, who are still more likely to be women, are put off getting involved in politics.
The glass ceiling refers to a situation where women can see the path to the jobs at the top of an organisation, but there are invisible barriers preventing them from obtaining these posts. This can often be down to taking time out of a career to have children, general childcare, the inflexibility to work late or get in early or work weekends.
Over 40% of women work part-time, compared to just 12% of men. This leads to women automatically earning less. However, women who are working part-time tend to work in lower skilled, lower paid roles. These are called the ‘5 C’s’: caring, clerical, cashiering, catering, and cleaning. Only 12% of women who work part time in the private sector are in high-skilled jobs.