Nonstandard Work Schedules and Work-Family Issues


  • Han Wen-Jui

Document type: Encyclopedia Entry

Appears in: Work and Family Encyclopedia

Year: 2007


  • Alternative Work Arrangements
  • Shift Work
  • Wellbeing


  • Social Work


The transformation of jobs to serve the needs of a global 24-7 economy is having profound effects on work, workers, and their families. The US Census reports that about 15% of the workforce (approximately 15 million people) work evenings, nights, rotating shifts, or irregular schedules or hours (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2005). In Canada, about one-third of all employees work evenings, nights, or rotating shifts (Akyeamopong, 1997), and almost 20% of full-time employees work weekends (Silver & Crompton, 2002). Studies in Australia also report that more than half of the labor force works some or most of their hours other than a nine-to-five weekday (Watson et al., 2003). In the European Union, the percentages of all those employed who work nonstandard hours range from a low of 10% in France to a high of 20% in Greece, with Denmark, Finland, and the United Kingdom all close to 20% (as cited in Presser, 2003a). Moreover, nearly half of all employees work on Saturday at least once a month, whereas a third work one Sunday or more per month (Boisard, et al., 2003).

Link:Nonstandard_Work_Schedules encyclopedia