Roger Stenz, CEO, WPP HP Germany
“Twenty years ago, part-time workers made up less than 5% of our workforce in Germany – now it’s more than 40% and the approach is proving really popular! The part-time philosophy is a prominent feature of our pitches and credentials – and clients love it, because they know it gives them rapid access to a highly qualified, loyal and engaged workforce. The teams love it too – they appreciate the flexibility and how it can help them manage work/life balance.
Part-time is obviously a great opportunity for new mums returning to work – but we’re beginning to see men take advantage of it for paternity leave too. This is a great thing and we encourage more of it. But part-time also has benefits for people at other important stages of their lives beyond parenting. For example, one of our team has just chosen to go part-time as he approaches retirement, allowing him to readjust his work/life balance.
All in all, the culture and attitude towards flexible working in Germany is shifting. Part-time work is increasingly respected, not least because it’s incredible how productive and efficient part-time workers can be. I can only see this trend continuing as more people – clients and colleagues – recognise the benefits part-time and flexible working offers.”