Working Dads Change Perspective in Down Economy

June 17, 2009 ( - The number of working fathers willing to give up the breadwinner role is declining in the face of increased financial pressure, according to a CareerBuilder survey.

A CareerBuilder news release said 31% of working fathers would leave their jobs if their spouse’s salary or that of a significant other could comfortably cover the family’s bills – down from 37% in 2008 and 49% in 2005. Despite a tough economy, 30% said they are willing to take a pay cut to spend more time with their children, but that percentage is down from 37% in 2008. Forty percent would consider a cut of 10% or more, the poll found.

Thirty-nine percent of working dads report they spend two hours or less per day with their children during the workweek, while 14% are only able to spend an hour or less.

Thirty-one percent of working dads bring work home at least once a week, up from 25% last year. Half of working dads said they have missed a significant event in their child’s life in the last year due to work; 28% have missed more than three.

“Many working dads have to contend with heavier workloads and longer hours as businesses struggle to do more with less,” said Jason Ferrara, senior career adviser at CareerBuilder, in the news release. “Employers are placing more emphasis on work/life balance through creative benefits that encourage employees to better manage their personal and professional commitments. However, nearly half of working dads do not take advantage of any flexible work arrangements offered to them.”

The survey was conducted online within the U.S. by Harris Interactive on behalf of CareerBuilder between February 20 and March 11, 2009, among 797 U.S. male workers (ages 18 and over, employed full-time; not self-employed with at least one child under 18 years old living at home).