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The Right to Part-Time: Practical Implications from the Managerial Point of View

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  • Ralph Kattenbach

    () (University of Hamburg, Centre for Personnel Research)

Abstract

In 2001 the employee’s right to reduce working-time according to their own preferences was implemented in Germany. This legal title hardly effects the slowly but steadily growing number of part-time jobs. Nevertheless, data from the socio-economic panel suggest that about 25% of employees wish to reduce their working-time even if this is associated with a loss of income. The HR-manager is seen as a mediator and is expected to play a major role moderating the effect of the legislative implementation. Therefore the HR managers’ concepts and attitudes towards part-time as well as the psychological contract are the subject of the presented study. 42 HR-managers have been interviewed. The data are analysed according to qualitative content analysis. In common use the right to reduce one’s working-time is rather seen as a matter of negotiation than an obligation to comply. Indeed, the majority of the HR-managers express their goodwill but the acceptance of the part-time requests is dependent on general beliefs, work ethic, and role concepts. Regarding the right to part-time, these are indicators for a weak direct impact of labour law on the managerial reality.

Suggested Citation

  • Ralph Kattenbach, 2007. "The Right to Part-Time: Practical Implications from the Managerial Point of View," management revue. Socio-economic Studies, Rainer Hampp Verlag, vol. 18(3), pages 350-366.
  • Handle: RePEc:rai:mamere:doi_10.1688/1861-9908_mrev_2007_03_kattenbach
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    Keywords

    Part-time; Reduced Working Hours; Psychological Contract; Human Resources; Work Ethic;

    JEL classification:

    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
    • J53 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - Labor-Management Relations; Industrial Jurisprudence
    • M10 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - General

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