Frequently Asked Questions

Job Sharing: A partnership between two people who share the responsibilities of one full-time position.

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 Q: WHY SHOULD I JOB SHARE?

People choose to job share for a variety of reasons.  Some choose to job share due to a change in family. This might include becoming a new parent, getting married, or becoming a caregiver to aging parents.  Other reasons include working a reduced workweek prior to retiring or returning to the workforce from family or medical leave.  Others job share while they are continuing education on an advanced degree or simply because they want a life that’s not bounded by their jobs.

Job sharing allows you to separate your work and personal life so you can be your absolute best at both! Job share partners overwhelmingly express fulfillment working in a small team that brings two skill sets together for stronger results. Partners hold one another accountable and support one another in work and life. When it’s the right fit, job sharing can be life changing for your career growth and personal life.

 

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 Q: WHAT CAN WORK MUSE OFFER ME?

Work Muse is here to make it simple. We’ll help you find out how it works and if job sharing is right for you, how to find a partner, and how to make the business case to your employer. We want you to feel like one of the luckiest people on the planet – a job sharer, happy at home and happy at work!

 

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If you are an HR professional or manager, Work Muse can help you create a work environment that leverages job sharing to attract and retain diverse talent, increase productivity and engagement.  Learn more here.

If you want the most rewarding experience of your professional life and your best opportunity for real work-life balance, Work Muse can help you enter the world of job sharing.  Learn more here.

 

More Questions?

  • Q: How many people really want to job share?

    A: 61% of women and 30% of men are interested in the opportunity to job share.

  • Q: Does job sharing work in today's workforce?

    A. It does. Because the face of work is changing, there are two trends that support the adoption of job sharing more than ever before:

    • Globalization and digital overtime have created 24/7 work demands leaving employees burned out. If your company is actively looking for ways to combat burnout and turnover, job sharing is an effective option. You still get full coverage at your current pace while your employees continue to work in a high-impact role – just on a part-time basis while covering the full workweek companies need.  Employees unplug, recharge, and come back to work engaged and able to produce stronger solution-driven results.
    • Work is more project-based with small teams working together. Job sharers work in a team of two every day; they are excellent communicators, and solution-driven collaborators.

     

  • Q: Can job share programs help companies achieve their diversity goals?

    A: Yes, adoption of job sharing as a flexible work practice is a solid strategy to promote workplace diversity and achieve your company’s diversity goals. Job sharing will help your diversity program attract and retain:

    • Women with a decade or more in their professions who become pregnant, have children, or return to the workforce
    • Millennials who like working in teams and want to work flexibly because they don’t want the stress their parents experienced from working long hours
    • Boomers who are experienced leaders and passionate about work who take pride in their accomplishments and yearn to pass on wisdom to new generations
    • Those looking to increase their knowledge and career goals while earning an advanced degree
    • Experienced talent who are caregivers to children, a spouse, or aging parents
  • Q: How do job share programs not only recruit but retain diverse talent?

    A: Research makes it clear that companies with more diverse workforces are more successful. They have more engaged employees and perform better financially.

    The way we work has changed – globalization, telecommuting, and technology have upsides, but sometimes mean we lose the in-office connections employees value.  Job share partners work in a team of two every day; pairing partners of different genders, gender identifications, generations, cultures, faiths, and ethnicities leads to a deeper understanding and appreciation of our differences.

    Job share programs are about innovative talent design – a diversity & inclusion super tool to create more inclusive workspaces. It’s time for companies to re-imagine work with:

    • Cross-generational job sharing – i.e. boomer and millennial
    • Cross-gender job sharing – women and men
    • Cross-gender identification job sharing – straight and LGBTQ
    • Cross-cultural job sharing – people of different ethnicities, different faiths, and different cultures
  • Q: Can job sharing be a succession planning tool?

    A: Yes. Cross-generational or intergenerational job sharing is a diversity & inclusion strategy to pair people of different ages – i.e., a Boomer and Gen Xer – for professional development. The younger employee learns from the older employee’s years of experience and institutional knowledge, while the older employee learns from the younger employee’s technical expertise.

    Cross-generational job sharing is a succession planning strategy to pass the institutional knowledge, business know-how, and business relationships from one near retiring employee to the next with very little to no training costs.

    Can you think of a better succession planning strategy? When the boomer decides to retire, those decades-long relationships and know-how aren’t easily transferable – except maybe to their trusted, interchangeable job share partner. If the boomer’s relationships and institutional knowledge stay when he/she leaves, it can save the company substantial loss.

  • Q: What are the top benefits for employers?

    A:

    • Increased productivity
    • Increased engagement with solution-driven results
    • Attract the most talented, diverse pool of candidates
    • Retain top talent
    • Become an innovative trailblazer
  • Q: What are the top benefits for job sharers?

    A:

    • Work-life balance – time for your family and yourself
    • Work in a high-impact role part-time while keeping your career on track
    • Unplug and engage fully in your personal and professional life
    • Strong job satisfaction
    • Two heads are better than one
  • Q: Why hasn't job sharing gained traction?

    A: Although the results of job sharing examples are compelling, it still exists in small pockets and remains virtually unheard of. Employers fear an unfamiliar way of working that seems complex.  Job sharing is not for everybody and takes harder work on the part of the job sharers but, once it gets off the ground, it is simple, not complicated in practice.

    The two major barriers to employees seeking a job share partnership are:

    • Job sharing is never even considered, they’ve never heard of it, or they have the perception that their company does not offer job sharing, and
    • They don’t see a suitable partner at their work and they don’t know how to find one.
  • Q: What kind of roles does job sharing work in?

    A: Job sharing is not limited to support functions and can work in most role types including:

    • Sales and client-facing,
    • Leadership and team management,
    • Strategic and knowledge-based,
    • Fast-paced or highly transactional,
    • Even senior roles in global, fast-paced organizations.
  • Q: Is the structure of job sharing flexible?

    A.  Yes, job sharing is flexible. Job sharing is typically between two people but also can work with more. Both partners typically share the hours evenly, but the hours can be divided unevenly.  There are also many ways to design and implement a job share including pure share, hybrid share, and split share.

    • In a pure job share, one position is equally shared by two people who are interchangeable
    • In a hybrid job share, the position is divided and shared by playing to each partner’s strengths & expertise with joint liability for the overall position
    • In a job split share, the position is divided into two part-time roles responsible for one output
  • Q: What are the top reasons job shares fail?

    A.  The top reasons that job shares fail are:

    • Lack of company buy in
    • Lack of management support
    • The Triangle Effect between management and/or other employees and job sharers
  • Q:  What is the key to job share success?

    A.  The three main factors for job share success are:

    • The right individual
    • The right partner fit
    • The support of management and the company