Job-Sharing on the Rise in South Africa

Job-Sharing on the Rise in South Africa

Job-Sharing has great benefits for both employers and employees. That’s why more and more companies in South Africa are starting to offer job-share positions.

One of the toughest human resource challenges today is the recruitment and retention of talented employees. Very often, a couple of candidates can be found that tick most of the boxes to fill the job requirements, but there might be one or two things missing from their skill set, experience or availability.

Most often, an employer will hire a person who mostly fits the job requirements, meaning there will be some areas which are not fulfilled, or that further training is needed, while certain aspects of the job are put on the backburner. Imagine having the best of both worlds: hiring two for the price of one, and getting the full suite of skills and availability while motivating your employees. Here’s why job-sharing is awesome:


Job-Sharing benefits the employee in that they can work part-time while still furthering their career, while smart employers understand that this is a way to retain talented, experienced staff and maintain a full-time position within the firm.

Double talent 

Two people bring two sets of talents and perspectives when it comes to problem-solving.  One’s strengths will compensate for the other’s weaknesses.

Increased productivity

Each person will deliver greater productivity. A part-time employee has limited hours in which to complete certain tasks. They are less likely to take coffee breaks, hall chats and have long telephone conversations than full-time employees. Balancing work and family life mean that these employees will complete more work in a shorter time frame because they need to be focused.

Reduced errors

Two people on one job means that there is an automatic checking system in place to ensure errors do not occur.

Maintain continuity

Continuity will be maintained during holidays, sick leave and other absences. Furthermore, if one person moves on, there is at least part-time coverage in a position until a replacement partner is recruited. There is also the possibility that the remaining partner could work more hours than usual until another partner fills the shared position.

Retention means savings

Loyalty and retention are generally high and absenteeism is low among job sharers. Savings from retention and training costs are high for employers who can retain professional staff. Job-sharing is particularly attractive to female workers who start a family and have greater flexibility in their career. If employers are serious about retaining good female employees, job-sharing should be carefully considered.

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Are there cons to having two people share one job?

Yes, challenges include the need for highly effective communication channels and clear responsibilities between the two employees, their team members, and managers. Two sets of benefits for one position is a negative but does not outweigh the cost of retaining a valuable employee.

Experienced, capable, committed employees are everything in a successful organisation. Their experience and skills lay the foundations for its success. To lose a valuable employee because they have family commitments is disruptive and unnecessary.

Job sharing is yet another option in the list of flexible employer possibilities. It goes a long way to retaining a good member of your staff, maintains their loyalty to the company and increases their knowledge and skill, as well as their output and level of competence.

For those new to the concept, the most common concern is lack of responsibility and ownership should anything go wrong. These employers are missing a trick when it comes to retaining valuable staff.

A final word to the wise. Nurturing a culture of cooperation rather than competition is the best way to handle two different personalities without conflict.  Encouraging the attitude that sharing a common goal in order to divide the task and double the success is a guaranteed win for all. places highly skilled talent into permanent and contract part-time and flexible positions. Post a job. It’s free – pay only upon success.

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