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  • Job Sharing

    What exactly is it?

    Put quite simply, job sharing is “two employees forming a partnership to perform one full time job”.

    Job sharing is not two people performing two part time jobs for the same employer.
    Job sharing is one job, one job description and one job title that is shared by two people.

    Because both members of the partnership perform the same job, their professional identities often merge. In fact, the mark of a great partnership is that the roles stakeholders (co-workers, customers or suppliers) often can’t distinguish between the work of the two separate people.

    A variety of industries can job share

    There are two basic forms of job sharing, each with different characteristics which make them more or less suitable to particular jobs.

    Shared Responsibility

    The two employees share the responsibilities of one full-time job. Together the two individuals perform the full range of tasks within a single position. There is no division of duties. Instead, the partners are interchangeable, with either member of the partnership able to pick up where the other left off.

    Divided Responsibility

    Two people share one full-time position and divide different responsibilities between them to provide cover for the employer. This arrangement does not require quite the same level of coordination and communication and works well when work responsibilities can be clearly divided

    Benefits of Job Sharing

    Benefits as an Employee are many and varied but they nearly all result in one thing – more control over your time and how you are choosing to use it. In our busy world, time is the new currency and we are realising that while we can make more money, we can’t make more time. Job sharing means that we can use more of our time for what is most important to us – family time, learning time, health time, creative time, spiritual time, giving time…there are so many great things to do with our time! More balance in our use of time means we end up happier, healthier and more fulfilled.

    From a career point of view, continuity counts! Staying current, staying connected and staying in front of people all help with career advancement and job security. Job sharing means all of this is possible without having to make those horrible choices – ‘career or family?’, ‘job or creativity?’, ‘money or health?’, ‘relationship or career?’, ‘me or them?’. A good job-sharing arrangement can mean you are able to answer with ‘Both!

    Benefits as an Employer come down to added value. For the cost of one, the employer gains two overlapping sets of skills and experience. And as job share partners typically have better work/life balance, studies show they bring greater discretionary effort, increased initiative and higher productivity. Substantial cost-savings are experienced from higher loyalty and business continuity improves when job share partners provide cover during each other’s leave.

    Providing modern, flexible workplace arrangements such as job sharing marks an employer apart, adding substantially to their reputation as an ‘employer of choice’ and increasing not only the retention and engagement levels of existing employees, but also attractiveness to high caliber external candidates. So when an employer takes a little time and care to establish a successful job share arrangement, the outcomes produce a significant return on the investment.