Friday, December 08, 2006

Work-life balance dodgy for public sector workers

Employers in the public sector say they're all in favour of work-life balance but the truth is that not only are they not really committed to it but sometimes actually stop people from working flexibly, according to a new report from The Work Foundation commissioned by the strangely always upper case public service union UNISON. The report says that 75% of employers have these kinds of policies in place but only half of 1,000 public sector trade union members surveyed felt they had the chance to make real choices about their working arrangements. Laura Williams, senior researcher at The Work Foundation and co-author of the report, said: ‘Work-life balance is one of those areas where public sector organisations claim to be most progressive. But what this study does is to take a peek beneath those superficial commitments to what happens in real life. And what we see is a classic rhetoric-reality gap. In the worst cases, managers appear to want to stamp out any modest deviation from the norm and become standard-bearers for inflexibility."

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