Motivating Part Time Employees

Topics: Motivation, Management, Employment Pages: 6 (2037 words) Published: March 21, 2009
Motivating an organization’s employees is not amongst the easiest of tasks for a manager to accomplish. Even more challenging is motivating part-time employees whom are usually forgotten and ignored by the organization (Inman & Enz, 1995, p. 1). According to Statistics Canada, nearly 19% of the workforce constitutes of contingency workers who are not being utilized to their full potential (Statistics Canada, 2008). It is noticed that the number of contingency workers is almost one fifth of the workforce and the number is continuously growing year by year; thus it is important that companies start emphasizing on strategies to improve their part-time team. Ignoring these workers can cost many businesses to have an increase in employee turnovers, higher rate of absenteeism and higher retraining costs. The following section will analyze why part-time employees receive less attention and recognition than full-time employees and will suggest possible strategies to improve and motivate the part-time workforce.

Part-time employees should without a doubt be considered as part of an organization’s valued assets. These types of employees contribute to the businesses overall objectives, help decrease wage outlays and fill in or replace work hours that full-time employees do not want to work. However, managers have created myths about part-time employees in which they view them as inferior, less hardworking, less competent, indifferent about product quality or organization’s goals, less loyal and higher in absenteeism (Inman & Enz, 1995, p. 2). These myths are caused due to the fact that part-time workers are not paid as much as full-time workers, are usually needed for the organization’s “grunt” work, frequently have other goals to accomplish (school, family), are looked down upon by full-time employees and do not always have many career opportunities (Sykes). They also often quit their jobs because they feel that their managers ignore them and do not adequately prepare and train them for the job at hand (Inman & Enz, 1995, p. 1). A study done by Inman and Enz which involved a sample of 82 managers from various industries confirmed that many managers acknowledge the myths and do indeed believe that they fit part-timer characteristics (Inman & Enz, 1995, p. 2).

Although these characteristics given to part-time workers may be the result of stereotypes, it has a detrimental effect to an organization’s team since managers are not taking the proper measures in order to motivate these contingency workers. In fact, there is no significant difference between employee attitudes and their employment status; in other words, full-time and part-time employees both behave the same way toward work-related issues (Inman & Enz, 1995, p. 6). So in order to motivate part-time employees, managers must put into action several strategies and plans that will equalize the full and the part-time employee.

Offer Incentives

Many managers do not believe in offering incentives to their part-time employee because they have the idea that these employees are less competent and are not fully in tune with the organization and its goals. This can create huge employee dissatisfaction and can result in higher turnover rates. Part-time employees enjoy incentives since it allows them to get paid for their performance and knowledge as well as gain recognition and attention from the managers. Managers can include part-time employees in an employee-of-the-month program, offer rewards for good performance as well as enforce employees to give suggestions on how to improve procedures. Not only will they benefit with a reward but they will also feel that they are contributing more to the company along with the company benefiting from the suggestion (Pollar, 2000). However, there is one important aspect to remember about offering employee incentives which is if you are going to offer an incentive make sure that you keep it implemented or improve on it. To give an...

Cited: Inman, C., & Enz, C. (1995, October 5). Shattering the myths of the part-time worker. Retrieved March 16, 2008, from All Business:
Kohn, A. (1999). Punished by Rewards: The Trouble with Gold stars, Incentive Plans, A 's, Praise, and Other Bribes. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.
Pollar, O. (2000, October 20). Keeping Part-Time Employees Happy. Retrieved March 16, 2008, from VHI Healthcare:
Statistics Canada. (2008, 01 10). Full-time and part-time employment by sex and age group. Retrieved 03 16, 2007, from
Sykes, E. (n.d.). Eight Ways to Motivate Part Time Employees . Retrieved March 16, 2008, from Senior Magazine Online:
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