Business

More executives 'working part-time'

Alix Ainsley and Charlotte Cherry
Image caption Alix Ainsley and Charlotte Cherry are both part-time HR directors at Lloyds Bank

An increasing number of senior staff are working part-time, according to a study by Timewise, a group which campaigns for flexible working.

One in six of those who earn more than £40,000 a year now work fewer than five days a week, the study said.

That represents a rise of 12% over the past two years.

The trend towards job sharing is also increasing, with senior staff at the Ministry of Defence, the Guardian and Lloyds Bank all benefitting.

The study includes a Power Part Time list, which details the 50 most senior workers in the UK who work part-time.

Nine of those people work in job shares, the highest number to date.

"The dramatic increase in job shares on this year's Power Part Time List, offers us a glimpse into how jobs will be designed in the future," said Karen Mattison, one of the joint co-founders of Timewise.

"All it takes is an open minded employer who is prepared to try something new in a bid to hire or keep the best people, and an innovative solution is born."

High flyers

In the UK as a whole, 8.5 million people work in part-time jobs, equating to one in four workers, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Timewise said its research indicated that 86% of those actually wanted to work part-time, to fit in with something else in their life, such as caring for a child or relative.

However, those who analyse employment figures have previously suggested that many of those working part-time are doing so only because they cannot find a full-time job.

Two senior employees from Lloyds Bank are on Timewise's list for the first time: Alix Ainsley and Charlotte Cherry are joint HR directors at the bank, leading a team of 30 staff, and they each work three days a week.

Other high profile part-time workers include Caroline Lucas and Jonathan Bartley, who are joint leaders of the Green Party, and Sarah Ellis, the head of marketing strategy at Sainsbury's.

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