Recession could bring turnaround in job gender balance

Women could become the main breadwinners in the recession as they are used to doing the kind of short term, flexible work employers are looking for, say experts. Plus other news.

Women could become the main family breadwinners in the future, says a report on Wales Online.
It states that the latest unemployment figures for Wales show 8.3% of men are unemployed, compared with just 5.2% of women, although overall more men are employed than women.
In the US, men account for 82% of those made redundant since the end of 2007. Experts say women could be less badly affected by the recession than men as they are used to working on the kind of short term flexible contracts that are attractive to employers in the current economic climate. Canada is also reporting that women are likely to surpass men in employment terms in the recession.
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Big rise in redundancies anticipated

Over a third of employers are expecting to make redundancies in the first quarter of this year, according to a report by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.
The report shows 36% of employers anticipate job losses. A spokesperson for KPMG said the deterioration in the labour market was "breathtaking". The Observer  reported that there was anecdotal evidence of women taking reduced maternity leave for fear of losing their jobs. A third of nurseries polled by the National Day Nurseries Association last month said their numbers were going up.
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Innovate to accelerate out of recession
The recession is the time for smart employers to innovate with new management techniques such as flexible virtual teams, says the FT.
It says previous recessions have brought changes in working culture with the 1980s heralding the death of the concept of a job for life. It predicts a surge in home-based working and a move away from ‘command and control’ types of top-down management.
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KPMG agree to groundbreaking flexible work deal
Some 69 per cent of KPMG staff have agreed to flexible working in an effort to stave off job losses.
The move which sees staff volunteer for four-day weeks or sabbaticals of up to three months on reduced pay could provide a blueprint for other employers.
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Flexible working to beat the snow
SMEs turned to flexible working in the snow last week and saved around £333m on Monday alone, says BT Business.
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