Part-time vs. full-time study programmes: do human resource managers have a preference?

by Katharina Budik, Christine Cremerius, Timo Förster, Barbara Lier, Sebastian Lorenz, Kathrin Teichmann & Patrizia Thamm

Only few studies have analysed whether human resource managers assess graduates of part-time studies differently to the traditional full-time programmes. This study aims to fill this research gap. A total of 98 human resource managers from different companies have been asked which criteria they apply to choose applicants and whether they assign relevant skills to graduates of a part-time or full-time study programme. A general preference for one type of study cannot be determined. It is of little surprise that expertise is highly crucial. However, it could be noted that soft skills are increasingly important in the selection process. There are soft skills that are explicitly ascribed to graduates of a part-time study programme. This study reveals that the amount of part-time graduates hired increases with the knowledge these companies have about part-time studies. Moreover, a positive connection between the size of a company and the amount of hired part-time graduates has been determined. Finally, it could also be verified that large companies are significantly better informed about the procedure and organization of part-time studies.

Key words: part-time studies, preference, full-time studies, soft skills, graduate recruitment, job market prospect