Most jobs do not offer flexible working despite the huge change in the world of work caused by the coronavirus crisis, new research suggests.
A study of more than six million job vacancies over the past year indicated that four out of five did not include an option to work flexibly.
Timewise, which campaigns for flexible working, said its findings showed the difficulty of finding jobs which demanded anything other than full-time, workplace-only roles.
Timewise chief executive Emma Stewart said: “The outlook for all jobseekers is stark but for those needing to work flexibly it is even worse.
“Women, carers, older workers and those with health concerns are currently at the greatest risk of becoming ‘flexcluded’ from work, as new ways of working fail to be reflected in employers’ recruitment advertising.
“We are calling on employers to simply adopt the same approach for job seekers as they are currently taking with employees, and to say so in job adverts.
“Whether offering remote working, or part-time hours, or staggered start and finish times. We have a real opportunity as we rebuild the economy to finally create a level playing field for the millions for whom flex is now both a necessity and an expectation.”
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The proportion of job vacancies in the UK which offered flexible options rose to just over one in five during the first national lockdown earlier this year, an increase of just 5% from 2019, said the report.
Timewise noted that the number of people working from home increased from 6% to 43% in late March, with levels dropping back to 37% by June.
The study suggested that many jobs advertised as home-working will revert to the office when possible.
Minister for Women Baroness Berridge said: “The benefits of flexible working have really been emphasised during recent months. We want to see more employers embracing practices such as working from home and returners programmes, which can have a positive impact for both men and women.
“Our recent work with Zurich has proved how effective a simple change to a job advert can be for workplace equality.
“It is vital that more employers take this on board as we seek to increase opportunities for everyone in this country.”