People would take a pay cut in exchange for flexible working

Almost half of UK workers would take a 20 percent pay cut if it meant they could spend more time at home with their families, according to new research from  Over 2,000 workers were asked if they were happy with their work-life balance and almost two thirds (64 percent) stated they were not and would like some form of flexible working to help them.

When prompted to explain the reasons why, the majority (73 percent) stated that they felt guilty for not spending enough time with their spouse and/or children. Those who were least unhappy with their work-life balance were found to work in ‘healthcare’ (16 percent), ‘travel’ (14 percent) and ‘marketing’ (12 percent). Whereas, it was found that people who were self-employed (54 percent), Vets or those working with animals (33 percent) and teachers (26 percent) were found to be most happy with their work life balance.

The top reasons for not being happy with their work-life balance in the report were:

  1. I don’t get paid enough for the hours I work / I don’t get paid overtime – 66 percent
  2. I don’t get very much time with my children between work and them going to bed – 64 percent
  3. I feel I am missing my child/children growing up – 56 percent
  4. I feel guilty that I don’t spend enough time with my partner – 58 percent
  5. My work pattern is not the same as my spouses – 20 percent

Asked what they would be happy to do in order to get more time with their family, almost half (49 percent) would consider taking a pay cut and cutting their hours, whilst one in three (33 percent) would like to be able to work from home or work flexitime.

Almost all of those who would be happy to cut their hours and their pay (85 percent) would consider dropping one day at work and losing 20 percent of their income, with just 15 percent relishing the idea of cutting even more hours.