Part-time workers and complex income

Posted 22-10-2018

In 1975, 8.7% of the working population was self-employed according to Office for National Statistics. Today, self-employment accounts for 14.7% of the working population.

The number of part-time workers in the UK has also grown to 8.58 million in April 2018, compared to 6.03 million when records began in 1992 – an increase of 42% in the last 26 years.

Some of this growth, particularly in recent years, has attracted controversy with the increasing use of zero-hour contracts raising questions about the exploitation of workers.   However, median weekly earnings for part-time workers, from all income sources, have actually increased more than for full-time employees.

In the 2015-2016 financial year, the median weekly income for part-time workers increased by 54% compared to 2000-2001, from £177.50 to £273.75.

Statistics for full-time employees on the other hand, show an increase of 38% over the same period from £306.75 to £423.25.

Part-time workers and complex income

According to ONS data, which is split by gender, part-time workers rely on more diverse sources of income compared to full-time workers. This is outlined in the table below with data from 2015-2016 tax year. 


  Employment income Tax credits and benefits Other
Female full-time 94% 3% 1%
Female part-time 70% 16% 14%
Male full-time 95%   5%
Male part-time 60% 7% 33%


So why is this important?

With a growing number of part-time workers receiving income through various sources, it’s important to choose a lender that is able to consider their full circumstances. With clients with complex income, this is likely to make a bigger difference to their overall affordability compared to a client who works full-time. 

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