Managers Still Frown on Use




Local Situation

Despite having more women, one still finds much less women in the local labour force.   Statistics shows that in September 2003, only 27.4% of the total population worked: - 17.4% worked full-time; 3.9% worked part-time and 1.1% worked full-time with reduced hours.   This compared to 48.8% of males engaged in full-time employment (National Statistics Office News Release, 2004:37).

Female participation in further Education kept increasing throughout the years.   In fact in 2001/2002, 56.9% of the University students were female.   Yet, as we have seen before, very few women work and statistics showed in 2003, only 89 women (15.7%) held top positions (ibid).   This clearly shows that the majorities of women are ambitious but are restricted to continue their careers in order to raise families.

One of the main reasons is that there are not enough family-friendly measures available.   Flexible work schedules such as reduced working hours or part-time work, are not available in all workplaces, probably because many employers are not in favour of part-time work or reduced hours and very often they see flexibility as an extra cost (Bartolo, 2005).   Also there is the perception that a woman who requests flexible work schedule is no longer serious or interested in her career and the insignificant statistical amount of women on reduced hours demonstrates that where some benefits are instituted they might be underused.   Organisations seldom ‘walk the talk’ of family-friendly policies.   These issues shall be critically analysed, supported with research and experience.


Employers’ views : Employers view flexibility as an extra cost

This implication is supported in a study carried out by Rizzo (2003), where it was found that the majority of managers representing 35 firms from the manufacturing sector, service sector and state run/owned enterprises view that...