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Pros and Cons of Zero Hour Contracts

Zero hour contract is a working arrangement where workers are expected to work for a number of hours either through ad-hoc contract or casual worker contract. The employer offer you work when he needs you.



1. Flexibility: Zero Hour contract enables workers to have a work schedule and be flexible on when they have to work and when they can turn down some work. It is great for individuals who want to work outside the standard 9-5 working hours.

2. Extra income: If there is more job, you can take up extra hours than your normal working hours and this gives you extra income.

3. Different employers: Zero hour contract enable you to work for more than one employer.

4. Growth: It helps businesses to mitigate the risk of having to employ workers on a permanent basis and having to pay them more especially during the low business season. It ensures you don’t have more employees than you need.

5. Open to more opportunities: Having flexible working hours it’s a great way to get a chance at a company you want to work for. If there is a full-time job in the company, you can take up other open opportunities and make yourself available in case a permanent opportunity presents itself.

6. Affordable: If a worker is not working, he will not get paid. The employer will not incur extra expenses like maternity pay, paid off days, and other benefits offered to the full-time employee.

7. Increase productivity: Having flexible working hours have a positive impact on the workers and it enables them to increase their productivity and retention within the firm.

8. Freedom: Workers have the freedom to choose when to work and this gives them greater flexibility to commit in other areas like studies.

9. Permanent contracts: Zero hour contract act as a way to enable you to get your foot in the company’s doors, gain more experience and it can lead to permanent contracts on a company you love working for.

10. Gain field experience: The workers will be able to gain more experience through working in different organizations set up.



1. Low income: Although you’re in a position to work extra hours, sometimes you may not be able to have enough hours to work for the company and look for extra hours in another company. This may make you end up struggling to pay all your bills.

2. Unpredictable workers: Although workers are flexible, it is difficult to do financial planning work on zero hour’s contract. This creates a state of uncertainty.

3. Unpredictable hours: Sometimes Zero hour contracts are unfavorable because you may be assigned work at last minute. This may affect your social life and other plans. You may be forced to leave your other plans and do the work.

4. Lack of control over the worker: An employer cannot prevent the worker from working for another firm even their competitor.

5. Less work than expected: Although you may set a number of hours to work in the company at the beginning, when there is less work you work for few hours and this may affect your financial status.

6. Pressure: Although you have the right to turn down an extra work you don’t want to do, sometimes some company will put pressure on you to turn up for any last minute work. The employer wants you to be flexible otherwise, you may run the risk of not being requested to do extra work in the future.

7. Poor relationship and communication: In Zero hour contracts, you don’t have a great work relationship with managers like in normal employment and this may affect your relationship and communication.

8. Lack of security: In zero hour contracts, there is no financial security. Sometimes you may work for a few hours making it difficult to determine how much you receive per month.

9. Dismissed any time: In Zero hour contract, the workers can be dismissed at any time. No job security and the majority of them are employed on-demand.

10. No employment benefits: Workers will not receive employment benefits like paid leave, insurance schemes, and retirement benefits among others.

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