Hourly Workers Seek More Flexibility, Survey Shows

Employees want more hours, but also better schedules and rewards for good work
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While many hourly workers are keen to get more hours and make more money, benefits are also top-of-mind — including some more associated with salary jobs, such as health insurance — according to a new survey.

To gain some insight into how hourly workers perceive their jobs, hourly employment platform Snagajob surveyed 2,000 people paid by the hour to see what they liked and didn’t like about their work arrangements.

While 83% of respondents said they were satisfied with their job, nearly 30% said they wanted to work more hours. Overall, 64% of those questioned worked full-time, with respondents averaging 34 hours on the job per week.

A key concern among hourly employees was having some level of control over when they worked. In fact, 43% said they’d experienced getting less than one day’s notice about a shift change or a new schedule. And 23% of respondents said they had quit a job as a result of not getting the shift or schedule they wanted.

Benefits wanted

Beyond better scheduling, hourly workers also want more benefits. The survey found paid vacation and sick days were the top benefits that would convince hourly workers to stay at their job longer. This was followed, in order, by career growth opportunities, flexible hours, health insurance, and transportation reimbursement.

In addition to standard benefits, they also wanted rewards for excelling at their work. Among ways respondents wanted recognition for a job well done:

  • 83% wanted to a bonus or raise
  • 18% wanted more responsibilities
  • 15% wanted special perks such as flexible schedules or reserved parking
  • 12% wanted public recognition in the workplace such as employee of the month

There are many factors to consider when looking for work. The rise of the gig economy has opened up many opportunities for freelancers and other workers who don’t want to be saddled down with a salaried position.

However, there are financial considerations to also keep in mind. For example, if you don’t have the opportunity to work enough hours to support your financial obligations, you may need to find a better paying position — perhaps with a set salary — or look for a second stream of income.

The good news is that the currently low unemployment rate could translate to more opportunities to find a position that fits your lifestyle.

Tamara E. Holmes

Tamara E. Holmes is a Washington, DC-based writer who covers personal finance, entrepreneurship and careers.

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