Organisations still tend to have trouble with part time women who want to work at senior level (though there are some notable exceptions).
There is a feeling that being ‘senior’ requires full time attendance – at least until you get to be a non executive director!
Part time workers tend to get the double whammy of earning less because they work less hours AND because they are relegated to less senior posts.
Perhaps the time is coming to clarify the supervisory and managerial elements of pay in a way that allows for job splitting, part time working and role tailoring. Just as many non cash benefits have been converted to pay (e.g. company cars). Perhaps it’s time for the compensation and benefits people to come up with a new pay structure that is transparent, fits the organisation’s needs and reflects the modern world.
How about a basic FTE wage for everyone that is the same, to which are added supplements per direct report, per indirect report, per £k of budget controlled, or other measureable financial criteria. We can have uplifts for being on target and reductions for taking mad risks. We can have elements for specialist knowledge qualifications and experience.
Then, if someone wants to take a step back, reduce their number of hours/reports/level of responsibility, they can calculate for themselves what this would mean financially. Wouldn’t it make flexible working requests easier to deal with now if the person making the request could reasonably anticipate what this would mean for them financially?
Then, if someone wants to go part time, we know what elements of their role we are splitting (and which elements we are not).
Why not have a pay scale that does not automatically reflect the hierarchical structure of the organisation? Why not pay some ‘niche players’ more if they are really worth that much?
The future world of work is not the past and maps are already out of date.
Annabel Kaye is Managing Director of Irenicon Ltd, a specialist employment law consultancy. Tel: 08452 303050 Fax: 08452 303060 Website : www.irenicon.co.uk. You can follow Annabel on twitter – http://twitter.com/AnnabelKaye and check our regular articles and news throughout the autumn on our blog site – http://irenicon.wordpress.com/