Almost half of IT professionals believe the industry has not adapted itself to a flexible working culture, research has revealed.
A survey conducted by online recruitment provider http://www.theitjobboard.co.uk/ found that although 61.1 percent of IT professionals work flexible hours, almost half (45.2 per cent) feel this culture has not yet been accepted.
The survey classified flexible working as working from home, working less hours/part time, flexi-time and working a four and half day week.
Nearly one fifth (17.4 per cent) said they felt flexible working had a negative effect on their career progression, with several feeling employers saw them as less committed to their job because they were not in the office.
In addition, 22.6 per cent had considered going back to work on a non-flexible basis.
When job hunting, IT professionals considered flexible working the second most important criterion after salary.
64.1 per cent of respondents believed salary is the most important factor, when looking for a job, and 57.4 per cent said flexible working. 50.3 per cent chose location and 41.7 per cent said career progression.
Out of the 38.9 per cent of respondents that did not work flexible hours, 81.5 per cent said they were not offered the option by their employer, despite 90.2 per cent saying they would like the choice.
Two-thirds (65.4) per cent felt the balance between their work and home life suffered through non-flexible working conditions.
Alex Farrell, managing director at www.theitjobboard.co.uk, said: “With the current skills shortage in the technology industry, employers need to act now to encourage and retain talent in their IT departments. The option to work flexible hours is clearly high on the agenda for IT professionals.
“It is worrying therefore to see that many organisations do not offer it and that many of those that do are not perceived to be getting it right.”
He added: “A key factor in tackling the skills crisis is to encourage more women into the traditionally male domain of the IT workforce. It is widely acknowledged that a flexible working policy is essential to many female IT professionals because it allows them to balance the demands of their career with family and childcare commitments – employers have no time to lose in introducing this practice.”
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