Last week’s Jobs Report cited an increase in unemployment to four percent, up from the 18-year low of 3.8 percent reported last month. The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary came out July 10 and showed for May 2018, there were 6.6 million job openings as of May 31 – matching the number of unemployed persons for June as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Both reports and the statistics indicate a tight labor market.
Still, even a 1:1 ratio of jobs to unemployed doesn’t mean skills match evenly. U.S. businesses with unfilled positions face production, service and growth challenges.
Businesses need to get creative and consider all options to solve this workforce challenge. Permanent part-time employees – those who are employed by a company to work an amount of time less than a full-time staffer – are an option.
The difference between a permanent part-time employee and a regular or temporary part-timer is the permanent part-timer receives benefits. Although the benefits are typically accrued at a slower rate than a full-time employee, benefits for a part-time position are an attractive selling point for a prospect.
Examples of workers who may be good candidates for permanent part-time work include:
- Students can manage their school schedules to take on a permanent part-time role. Students bring an eagerness to the workforce that is refreshing to the company culture, and they can provide new ideas that can help modernize an organization’s approach to business. They also hold the potential to become a regular employee.
- Many retirees look for ways to supplement their incomes and many are not yet prepared to retire full-time. While students bring new enthusiasm, retirees bring experience and wisdom that can benefit a business. They have the maturity to handle any workplace issue without drama and can serve as a mentor to less experienced employees.
- Individuals rejoining the workforce. People sometimes take time off work to care for children, elderly family members or they simply take a sabbatical. When it’s time to go back to work, starting out part-time is a good way to ease back into a work groove.
- Adults who simply want part-time work. The July/August issue of Inc. Magazine cited a Bureau of Labor Statistics data point that showed from 1994 – 2016 nine percent of workers aged 25-54 worked part time voluntarily, and the BLS expects that number to remain stable. The mutual benefit of the part-time situation results in a happy employer / employee relationship.
The Lee Group believes part-time workers – permanent, temporary, or temp-to-perm – can add cost-efficient value to a business.