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Beyond Zero Hours To Right Hours

Beyond Zero Hours to Right Hours

Today, we see a crisis in talent acquisition, motivation and retention in many industries: such as nurses and teachers in the UK public sector.  Millennials want a different work-life mix to their parents. Enterprises and government agencies are often constrained in offering flexible hours, due to clunky HR and payroll systems. We now have the Zero Hours contract for workers at all levels – and this label is rarely given anything other than a bad name – often a code for ‘worker exploitation by ruthless bosses’.
Flexible, Yet Predictable Hours

Whilst many people working under Zero Hours contracts are denied rights and live with high levels of insecurity and uncertainty of pay, for many knowledge workers, such as ‘bank’ nurses or ‘supply’ teachers, flexible working is a plus. For many millennial professionals, raising a family, looking after elderly parents and other commitments lead to at least one partner in a family unit wanting to work part-time and are OK with being paid for actual hours worked.

However, not having some level of predictability or not being able to state preferences in availability is a significant problem, made worse in areas such as nursing or teaching, where this lack of flexibility combined with predictability is not there. What’s needed in curbing the exodus from professions such as nursing or teaching is not Zero Hours but Right Hours. This can only be accomplished if enterprises, NHS Trusts, schools and other organisations invest in IT systems that facilitate Right Hours for people, such as millennial parents, who choose to work part-time and need the right balance of flexibility and predictability in their work rosters….