Gender and Use of Workplace Policies

Time Off: paid vacation, older women, access (2004)

Statistic: 

According to the Ecology of Careers study, "...midcourse women (age 50 and over) are the least apt to have paid vacation benefits after leaving the workforce for a brief time (only 51.4% do)" (Moen et al., 2004, p. 18). 

Source: 

Moen, P., Dempster-McClain, D., Altobelli, J., Wimonsate, W., Dahl, L., Roehling, P., & Sweet, S. (2004). The new "middle" work force. Life Course Center at the University of Minnesota and the Bronfenbrenner Life Course Center (and Cornell Careers Institute) at Cornell University. 

Description: 

The Ecology of Careers Study involved interviewing, "a random sample of mostly middle-class employees working with various organizations and/or living in certain neighborhoods in upstate [Central and Western] New York. If they were married or living with someone, we also interviewed their partners as well [1764 men and 1712 women; 1653 couples]. The people in this study may be considered -- and consider themselves-- middle-class; most are managers, professionals, technical workers, and almost all have at least some college education. But they are a diverse group, varying by gender, age, life stage, ethnicity and country of origin, marital status, parental status, employment status, income, and ability/disability, as well as by where they live and where they work" (Moen et. al., 2004, p. 2). 

Flexible Work: flextime, gender, prevalence (2004)

Statistic: 

"Women are somewhat more likely (79%) than men (68%) to use flextime when it is available" (Galinsky, Bond, & Hill, 2004, p. 6).

Source: 

Galinsky, E., Bond, J.T. & Hill, E.J. (2004). When work works: A status report on workplace flexibility: Who has it? Who wants it? What difference does it make? Retrieved November 21, 2005, from http://familiesandwork.org/3w/research/downloads/status.pdf

Description: 

“The research findings reported here are drawn mainly from Families and Work Institute’s National Study of the Changing Workforce (NSCW). The NSCW is conducted every five years, beginning in 1992 and most recently in 2002. This representative sample of approximately 3,500 workers includes wage and salaried employees, self-employed workers, and business owners, although the data presented here pertains only to wage and salaried employees.”

Part-Time Work: gender, prevalence (2002)

Statistic: 

According to the National Study of the Changing Workforce: "Women are much more likely (24%) to have part-time positions in their main (or only) job as defined by their employers than men (9%)" (Bond, Thompson, Galinsky, & Prottas, 2002, p. 9).

Source: 

Bond, J.T., Thompson, C., Galinsky, E., & Prottas, D. (2002). Highlights of the national study of the changing workforce. New York, NY: Families and Work Institute.

Description: 

“The NSCW surveys representative samples of the nation’s workforce once every five years (1992, 1997, 2002).  Sample sizes average 3,500, including both wage and salaried employees and self-employed workers” (Highlights of the National Study of the Changing Workforce, 2002, p. v).

Several of the questions in the National Study of the Changing Workforce were taken from or based upon questions in the Quality of Employment Survey (QES) conducted three times by the Department of Labor from 1969 to 1977.  Although the NSCW is more comprehensive than the QES in addressing issues related to both work and personal life and has a stronger business perspective, having comparable data from over a 25 year period has provided a unique opportunity to look at trends over time.  The 2002 NCSW uses 25 years of trend data to examine five topics in depth: women in the workforce; dual earner couples, the role of technology in employees' lives on and off the job, work-life supports on the job, and working for oneself versus someone else (Highlights of the National Study of the Changing Workforce, 2002).

To read the Executive Summary or the press release, and to purchase the full report as a PDF E-product, please visit http://www.familiesandwork.org/site/work/workforce/2002nscw.html

Part-Time Work: gender, employee perception (2002)

Statistic: 

“Fifty-nine percent of men in the United States who were interested in part-time employment were doubtful that they could ever use this policy, whereas only 43% of interested women felt this way” (Wharton & Blair-Loy, 2002, p. 54).

Source: 

Wharton, A.S., & Blair-Loy, M. (2002). The “overtime culture” in a global corporation. Work and Occupations, 29(1), 32-63.

Description: 

“In 1998, we received permission from International Finance to study work-family policies in their organization…Our respondents are urban, high-level financial professionals in the United States (in three large cities), Hong Kong, and England (London) …Of the respondents, 160 were in the United States, 38 were in London, and the remainder (62) were located in Hong Kong” (pp. 41-42).

Leave: family leave, employee awareness, men, impact of marital status (2004)

Statistic: 

“…married men are significantly less likely to know about family leave than men who are not married, a difference in odds of about 32 percent” (Baird & Reynolds, 2004, p. 339).

Source: 

Baird, C.L., & Reynolds, J.R. (2004). Employee awareness of family leave benefits: The effects of family, work, and gender. The Sociological Quarterly, 45(2), 325-353.

Description: 

“The analyses use data from the young women’s and young men’s cohorts of the (1996) National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY), a nationally representative sample…The sample is limited to employees who should be covered under the FMLA according to Public Law 103-03 (1993)…The final sample consists of 1,333 women and 1,441 men for a total sample size of 2,774” (pp. 333-334).

Telework: work-at-home, gender, demographics (2003)

Statistic: 

Of people employed in 2001, 14.8% of males and 15.2% of females worked from home at least once a week. (U.S. Census Bureau, 2003)

Source: 

U.S. Census Bureau (2003). Persons doing job-related work at home: 2001. Table no. 605. Retrieved February 8, 2005, from the Statistical Abstracts of the United States Web site: http://www.census.gov/prod/2004pubs/03statab/labor.pdf

Link to main page of source: http://www.census.gov/prod/2004pubs/03statab/

Description: 

The chief source of these data is the Current Population Survey (CPS) conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau for the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).  The sample includes employed full-time wage and salary workers 16 years old and over in the US. Excludes the self-employed. Data relate to the primary job.   

For description of data sources, see http://www.census.gov/prod/2004pubs/03statab/labor.pdf

See http://www.census.gov/prod/2004pubs/03statab/app3.pdf for limitations of data.

Work-Family Culture, Definition(s) of

“The shared assumptions, beliefs, and values regarding the extent to which an organization supports and values the integration of employees’ work and family lives” (Thompson et al., 1999, p. 394).

Glossary Source: 

Thompson, C. A., Beauvais, L. L.,& Lyness, K. S. (1999). When work-family benefits are not enough: The influence of work-family culture on benefit utilization, organizational attachment, and work-family conflict. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 54, 392-415.

Family-Supportive Policies, Definition(s) of

“Family-Supportive Polices are services such as flextime and childcare that help make the management of everyday family responsibilities easier” (Allen, 2001, p. 417).

Glossary Source: 

Allen, T. D.  (2001). Family-supportive work environments: The role of organizational perceptions. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 58, 414-435.

Family-Supportive Supervisor, Definition(s) of

“The Family-Supportive Supervisor is one who is sympathetic to the employee’s desire to seek balance between work and family who engages in efforts to help the employee accommodate his or her work and family responsibilities” (Allen, 2001, p. 417).

Glossary Source: 

Allen, T. D.  (2001). Family-supportive work environments: The role of organizational perceptions.  Journal of Vocational Behavior, 58, 414-435.

Ideal Worker, Definition(s) of

“The ideal worker is someone who works at least forty hours a week year round. This ideal-worker norm, framed around the traditional life patterns of men, excludes most mothers of childbearing age” (Williams, 2000, p. 2).

Glossary Source: 

Williams, J.  (2000). Unbending gender: Why family and work conflict and what to do about it. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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