Part-time employment may have the benefit of temporarily saving jobs and easing the full impact of the recession, it has been claimed.
John Philpott, chief economic advisor for the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, said part-time employment may not be the worse choice for Britons but was likely to be seen as a more preferable option than having no income.
However, he added: “Clearly if they are having to stay in part-time jobs year after year, then that wouldn’t necessarily be a good thing if their living standards dropped.”
Mr Philpott concluded the balance would be dependent upon the strength of economic recovery and how long it took for the jobs market to return to normal.
His comments come after the Office for National Statistics revealed underemployment rose sharply, alongside the rise in unemployment, during the recent recession.
Between July and September 2009, there were 2.8 million underemployed people – up from 2.1 million in July to September 2007 – in addition to the 2.6 million unemployed.