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To think part time = a dead end job

(28 Posts)
Canthaveitall Mon 23-Sep-13 21:33:51

I returned to work a few years ago after having had 5 years at home. Before that I worked in scientific research but I have not returned to that field due to moving and having had time off . I was happy about it at the time as I felt I had done all I had wanted in the 10 years I had been in that field.

I fell on my feet (or so I thought at the time) and managed to get into the IT industry in a support/admin role. I work 30 hours over 5 days . Children are now year 1 and year 3. I have done reasonably well - had several job offers thrown at me when they have arisen but all have been at the same level. I recently asked about a job at a higher level and was told only if I was FT.

AIBU to think that's pretty much it. If I don't work FT then I have to accept the support/admin roles? I think it's different if you are in a job f/t beforehand. I could kick myself as I know the science research job could have been done p/t if I had stuck it out. Although I wouldn't have been able to move to where we are now and I was fed up with it all at the end but am now doing that rose tinted glasses thing and fantasise about spending my days looking at petri dishes instead of moving bits of paper about. grin

So, do I suck it up as I have made the choice to work PT (albeit 30 hours which sure feels f/t hmm even though I feel unfulfilled and frustrated ?

Go for FT job in current industry as it's a promotion even though I think i will be making my life a whole lot more difficult ?

Or, I have seen a job in my old industry - it would mean a 1.5 hour journey each way but DH said he would consider moving if I liked it.

Loopytiles Mon 23-Sep-13 21:37:03

How frustrating. Are there any senior PT women (or men) you could seek advice from? Or find out more about the roles, to work out whether they'd appeal to you.

Canthaveitall Mon 23-Sep-13 21:47:54

I have to say the company I work for is particularly bad at PT workers. They now have a complete ban and I am only PT due to the length of time I have been there.I forgot to add - DH works abroad alot and has a long commute so I do drop offs and pick ups (DCs go to after school club everyday) which limits my opportunities.

Loopytiles Mon 23-Sep-13 22:11:45

A ban?! They must really want women and people with families then hmm maybe looking at options with other employers would be good.

DH is in IT, it's all a bit retro on equality!

Canthaveitall Mon 23-Sep-13 22:16:21

grin at retro.

Interestingly, there are few women in senior posts there. The majority of the support roles are done by young women (I am considered a dinosaur ) When they leave for maternity leave they rarely return. mostly because it's so inflexible I should think.

Pigsmummy Mon 23-Sep-13 22:16:36

I work for a company that has over 85,000 UK employees and there is a single part time opportunity. It sucks

Canthaveitall Mon 23-Sep-13 22:18:26

I don't like to sound boastful but I don't have to work from a financial point (mostly due to my job being low paid and the childcare bill is high). I am tempted to jack it and work out what the hell I want to do.

TwinkleSparkleBling Mon 23-Sep-13 22:25:48

I returned to work PT after DC.

Same company but it is a job of much lower status/prospects. However, I can't complain as I still get the same salary (pro rata).

I also know of a colleague who has been forced out of a senior role as she wanted to remain PT. Still working for the company but in a lesser role. As with me, there is no professional reason that this had to happen.

YANBU in my experience you can't work PT and have "prospects".

Sometimes I feel bitter but it was my choice and I'm lucky to be able to spend time with my family.

Canthaveitall Mon 23-Sep-13 22:52:21

Trouble is I Feel like family time is spent doing erands and tasks as 30 hours is so close to ft.

McNewPants2013 Mon 23-Sep-13 23:01:31

Not all p/t jobs are dead end.

I'm a nhs domestic, so I could apply for internal jobs ( not that I am planning to)

It's such a shame the company is not flexible as a lot of skills and training are being used by a different company.

Hogwash Mon 23-Sep-13 23:06:20

I'd like to hear your company explaining a complete ban to a tribunal!

The people I know who have interesting part-time jobs are in the same fields they were in before children, haven't had much time off and probably didn't make any money before the children went to school. Even then I've heard them complain that progression is limited.

peacypops Mon 23-Sep-13 23:29:02

I would also say that not all P/T jobs are dead-end. I work in the research dept for an educational organisation (20 hrs a week) and have been promoted since I started working there four years ago. The role I was promoted to had previously been a full time role but I have been fortunate in that I have been able to continue part-time and no pressure has been put on me to increase my hours. I think a lot depends on the organisation you work for - where I am there is definitely a good 'family friendly' working policy and part-time opportunities come up fairly frequently.

peacypops Mon 23-Sep-13 23:31:59

Oh - and just to add, I work in a completely different field to the one I worked in prior to having children

AnyFucker Mon 23-Sep-13 23:32:22

I suggest you put a proposal together for a job share

They are breaking the law if they cannot find a good enough reason to turn it down

chubbleigh Mon 23-Sep-13 23:56:29

I work in public sector research and always have been part time. It takes longer but you can progress. If you network and have good reputation you are well placed to move forward. The job I have now was full time, after I was offered I traded them down to 28 hours (but I often do more), less likely to get that in private sector. If you are going full time you have to love the job or it could make you miserable and/or stressed. I love mine so it works out.

Morloth Tue 24-Sep-13 00:30:31

Job share is a good arrangement.

I job share quite a good job, we are almost the same person in terms of personality and it has worked out extraordinarily well.

From my employer's point of view as well.

This week my job share partner is on holidays so I am covering, next week it is my turn.

The work is done continuously with no need to get anyone else in.

littlewhitebag Tue 24-Sep-13 07:36:51

I work PT as a social worker. I do exactly the same job as my colleagues, i just need to be very organised. My boss would love me to work FT but i like things just as they are.

JaceyBee Tue 24-Sep-13 07:45:13

I work in the NHS too and although there are some opportunities for further training and progression if PT I think it is usually expected that if they're going to invest in training someone they will be FT. There are some PT posts available in my field though as lots of counsellors have portfolio type careers and do some NHS, schools, 3rd sector, private etc. So maybe public sector workplaces are better for this than private on the whole?

noblegiraffe Tue 24-Sep-13 07:45:30

I'm a part time teacher and in my school they don't give promoted posts to part-timers either (which I understand is quite common).
A promotion came up in my department which would have been perfect for me but I couldn't even apply for it, it's very frustrating. Especially as they couldn't argue that it's because I'm not in every day as due to the timetable I have to teach 5 days a week anyway (paid for 3).

Chelvis Tue 24-Sep-13 07:53:21

All he people I know who are in good part time jobs (by which I mean intellectually satisfying, well paid, professional roles) had the jobs f/t then became p/t after children or because of their health. I think it's v v hard to find a good p/t job that is planned from the start as p/t - it just seems to be admin that's p/t. What about running your own business? That's my plan to get out of the rut of unsatisfying, dull p/t work!

SteppingOnLego Tue 24-Sep-13 07:58:12

I also wanted to say PT can allow career progression. I work for a company where I am manager of a part with 24 staff and not much interference from above (i.e. running that section as a business on its own). Have never worked full time (for this company) and was promoted to this role just over a year ago. I work 32 hours over 3.5 days. It is a lot of responsibility and I do often do extra at home but it gives me the flexibility I need and I get to occasionally see my family!

DH is also PT (85% FT) in civil service. He was FT and only got PT because of cuts in the budget, prior to that they had always refused requests. The attitude he got was one of disbelief - obviously only women are meant to want PT work!

Anyway, PT work doesn't seem to have affected our prospects. Where I work there are quite a few people doing my role and even the level above PT. There is a recognition that it would be daft to insist on FT only and lose the talent. Job shares are fairly common too, more so in the more junior positions though.

Beastofburden Tue 24-Sep-13 08:03:22

My advice is that a pt job is definitely not dead end IF it is highly skilled. Your problem is you are in admin and not in your science. That makes you too replaceable.

I would be looking at a job in a Uni (research grant support if you are unsure about returning to the lab) or a pharma company. I work in a major Uni and we depend on flexible hours to attract very high quality loyal staff.

When the DC are bigger you may well go back to ft anyway, if you love the job and they are happy.

Generally, if you want to be valued you have to be a scarce resource, so working in a highly skilled job such as lawyer or accountant where others bugger off to earn mega bucks in the city or abroad is also a good protecton against being undervalued.

pixiepotter Tue 24-Sep-13 08:04:00

* I recently asked about a job at a higher level and was told only if I was FT.*

By law PT employees have tio be treated no less favouraby than FT.So if the management have said that they won't entertain ever offering a senior job with pt HOURS, THEN THAT IS INDIRECT SEX DISCRIMINATION.(sorry about caps)
What I have done is applied for FT jobs and wowed them at the interview but said I would ideally want to stick to PT hours and it has worked many times for me, but I am an accountant

CloverkissSparklecheeks Tue 24-Sep-13 08:56:56

Pixie - me too and I have applied for full time jobs at a more senior level and they have agreed to 30 hours mainly as I guess the work will still need to be done so they consider it up to me how I do it at year end etc (usually more hours in those times but I take lieu time when I can).

If it were me I'd be tempted to jack it in and study at home for another position once dcs were older. Seen as you can afford to.

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