There are two forms of underemployment:
- time-related underemployment, which reflects insufficient hours of work in relation to an alternative employment situation that a person is willing and available to engage in
The number of underemployed workers is an important indicator of labour market performance. It highlights the unsatisfied aspirations of many workers for adequate work and greater earnings.
In September 2003, there were 207,900 employed persons aged 15 years and over in the labour force. Of these, 15,300 (7.4%) were underemployed, comprising 14,700 part-time workers who wanted more hours and 600 full-time workers who for economic reasons worked less than 35 hours in the reference week.
Of all part-time workers who wanted more hours, 59.2% were female. Some 54.4% of part-time workers who wanted more hours reported that they would like to work full-time.
- inadequate employment situations, which refers to all those in employment who want to change their work activities and/or work environment for a set of reasons. Such reasons might include insufficient use of skills and experience, inadequate income, and excessive hours.
UNDEREMPLOYED STATUS OF EMPLOYED PERSONS, Tasmania - September 2003
|Worked 35 hours or more in the reference week|
|Worked less than 35 hours in the reference week|
|For non-economic reasons(a)|
|For economic reasons(b)|
|Not wanting more hours|
|Want more hours|
|Usually work part-time and want to work more part-time hours|
|Usually work part-time and want to work full-time hours|
*estimate has a relative standard error of between 25% and 50% and should be used with caution
**estimate has a relative standard error greater than 50% and is considered too unreliable for general use
(a) Non-economic reasons include illness or injury, leave, holiday or flextime, and personal reasons.
(b) Economic reasons include being stood down, or insufficient work being available.
(c) Estimates have been rounded and minor discrepancies may occur between sums of component items and totals.
Source: ABS data available on request, Underemployed Workers Survey.
These statistics relate to a Tasmania Together benchmark.