Local economist comments on full time employees - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Local economist comments on full-time employees turning part-time

(WMC-TV) - The Action News 5 newsroom is getting tips from local workers who said their work schedules are being cut in half, turning some full-time employees into part-timers to decrease benefits. 

None of them wished to go on the record, but economists say the trend is not unusual.

At the University of Memphis, business professor Dr. John Gnuschke said the economy makes all decisions.

"More employers want part-time work because it gives them more flexibility," said Gnuschke.

"It really has more to do with the economic circumstances of each business," he continued.

Gnuschke said he's heard the same concerns about the effect the affordable care act will have, but said full-time work is more advantageous no matter what.

"For most businesses, you want a full-time employee that's dedicated to the business and helping you grow that business and can't be somebody that works part time," said Gnuschke. 

Employees of a local fast food franchise say they were told everybody's going to 20 hours per week, because of healthcare reform.

Action News 5 tried to confirm with that fast food franchise, but did not.

Gnuschke said, in general, switching to an all part-time staff would make doing business difficult.

"Very few changes will take place under Obamacare," he said. 

According to Gnuschke, employers throughout this community, restaurants and otherwise, try to hire as many full-time employees as they can and they try to keep them as long as they can.

"If this economy recovers like we hope it will employers are going to be looking for full time workers even though temporarily they'll be pushing part  time work," he said. 

Copyright 2012 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

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