Senior Consultant Glenn Oborne discusses the reasons behind the rise in Part-time and flexible working within the company secretarial market.
Over the past 2 years there has been a noticeable increase in the number of part-time company secretarial vacancies being created in the profession. A recent survey of FTSE 100 companies highlighted that 32.5% of the company secretarial departments we spoke to had at least one person within the team employed on a part-time basis.
This follows a broader trend as companies try to create a more agile workforce through utilising advancements in communications and technology such as remote access and video conferencing.
So who makes up the part-time company secretarial workforce and what are the potential advantages to employers?
In most instances, part-time company secretaries are parents with young families looking to redress work/home balance. Typically, the requirement here is for three full days per week or 5 days working reduced hours (10am - 2pm).
We have also noticed an increased interest from those approaching or beyond retirement age wishing to continue working part-time or flexibly. Some will utilise their wealth of experience to manage a small portfolio of private clients whose current needs can’t justify employing someone on a full-time basis. The work tends to be either routine statutory administration or project orientated in nature which in turn influences the number of days per week/month worked.
At a time when the demand for skilled company secretarial and governance professionals outstrips current supply, employers can take advantage of a largely untapped resource of part-time professionals. Through altering a specific position to facilitate part-time working, employers can secure calibre individuals with high levels of experience and technical skills that would otherwise be overlooked for full time positions.
Whatever the reason for someone wishing to work part-time, employers regularly comment that part-time workers have excellent time management skills and work remotely when required. As a result, work output per hour tends to be greater than their colleagues working full time.
Given that part-time roles are more difficult to find and secure, there is a higher employee retention rate and increased sense of loyalty. This is supported by evidence demonstrating that part-time workers remain in each job post on average 2.3 years longer than their full-time counterparts.
At a time when the demands on company secretarial departments is increasing and there is pressure to keep costs down, part time workers offer a more cost-effective solution to fulfilling the specific needs of a department.
Part-time positions are on the rise within company secretarial departments and we expect this trend to continue over the next 12 months. Assuming employers continue to adopt a more progressive approach towards fulfilling the needs of the department, it is likely that we will see a corresponding increase in the number of newly-created part-time vacancies.
To find out more about current part-time opportunities within the Company Secretarial market, contact Glenn Oborne here.