• 'The Magnificent 7[am]?' Work-life articulation beyond the 9[am] to 5[pm] 'norm'

      Smith, Andrew J. (2016-11-15)
      This article focuses on the work-life ‘balance’ challenges of those who work in organisations that operate beyond standard hours. The concept of work-life articulation is utilised to examine the experiences and practicalities of attempting to reconcile the, often competing, demands of employment and family life. Qualitative research was conducted in two private sector businesses and one third sector organisation in the UK during the onset of the 2008 financial crisis. The findings reveal increasing competitive pressures, efficiency drives and work intensification. ‘Business needs’ are prioritised over care responsibilities, and in the private sector organisations there is declining flexible working with a reassertion of the management prerogative. This article contributes to current debates over work-life ‘balance’ and highlights variable, changeable and unpredictable working time arrangements that permeate non-standard hours, which creates additional complexities and challenges for family time schedules and routines.