Part-Time or Full-Time: Which Job Is Right for You?

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  • A person can choose to work part-time or full-time, depending on their preferences and needs, while a part-time job can sometimes grow into a full-time job.
  • Part-time employment usually involves at least 30 work hours per week, whereas full-time employment involves between 30 and 40 work hours per week. 
  • Full-time jobs offer better job security and a benefits package with health insurance and retirement funds. 
  • Part-time jobs offer more flexibility and free time to spend doing other things. 

There comes a time in every person’s life when they must grow up and become a responsible adult. The process of growing up involves leaving behind the careless days that do not involve any obligations and getting a real job. But what type of job do you want – part-time or full-time?

In today’s guide, we will discuss the difference between part time and full time employment while focusing on the five key features of both these employment options. If you want to learn more on the topic, keep reading!

What Is a Full-Time Job?

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Full-time employment involves working at least 30 to 32 hours per week, but it can go up to 40 hours per week. The person can work for a company fulltime or full-time freelancing for themselves.

Both options have advantages and disadvantages, especially regarding the person’s work and life balance. But the advantages usually outweigh the disadvantages, as full-time employees have more stable jobs and are given full-time employment with all the added benefits and a salary they would receive regularly.

Typical Work Schedule for Full-Time Employees

One of the main disadvantages of full-time employment is that workers are obliged to spend a good portion of their day fulfilling their work obligations. Usually, these jobs are called 9-to-5 jobs because people must be at the office or do their work from 9 AM until 5 PM.

If you are wondering, “9 to 5 is how many hours,” we can tell you it is eight work hours per day. That means workers with a 40-hour weekly work schedule can fulfill their work hours in five days and be free for the weekend.

Full-time Employees Benefits and Compensation

Now, to counter the disadvantage of the long work days—one of the good things about full-time employment is all the employee benefits that come with it. More often than not, companies will pay health insurance for their full-time employees while adding funds to their retirement accounts or giving them company perks. 

This is individual to the company, but in the best-case scenario, full-time employees can get dental, vision care, health, life insurance, a company vehicle, several retirement options, etc.

What Is a Part-Time Job?

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If working full time or full-time freelancing does not sound like something you are up to, you can always look into another option – part-time employment! The main difference between part-time and full-time employment is that full-time involves at least 30 hours of work weekly, whereas part-time involves 30 hours at most. The minimum hours a part-time employee works vary between 20 and 28, usually not exceeding 30.

Typical Work Schedule for Part-Time Employees

The typical work schedule of a part-time employee, whether they are doing a part time IT job or simply working at a fast food place, would be much more flexible than that of full-time employees. These workers can work shifts or stick to a strict work schedule that begins at a certain time and lasts for the next four to five hours.

It all depends on the specific position. Sometimes, parttime jobs allow workers to finish the work within one or two days and take the rest of the week off, which sounds quite amazing if you are stuck at an office job every day. So, the answer to “How many days is part time employment” is not exactly straightforward – instead, the accent is put on the number of hours.

Part-Time Employees Benefits and Compensation

The compensation for an office position with a schedule that is part-time or part time freelancing is usually lower than that of a full-time employee. Often, these employees are not given any benefits or perks as they are considered just as a helping hand in times of need.

Depending on the specific position, they might not receive regular work or even be employed seasonally. Nevertheless, we advise everyone interested in part-time work to ask how many hours a day is part time so that they are clear on their obligations and if they will get benefits.

Key Differences Between Part-Time vs Full-Time Jobs

If you want to make a more educated decision as to whether you want a part time vs full time job, here are the five main features you should consider. Let’s discuss them in greater detail:

Schedule Flexibility

Schedule flexibility is definitely something to consider. With part-time, you can ask, “How many hours a week is part time” and divide those work hours however you like. With full-time, you cannot divide the hours as much, as you usually have an eight-hour workday. So, if you are looking for flexible employment, it is better to start working part-time.

Compensation and Benefits

The compensation is usually larger for full-time positions, but that can vary depending on your field of work. For example, working as a clerk part time or part-time freelancing in IT and graphic design will not bring you the same income.

The same goes for full-time employment, although the benefits attract people to these positions. Employers are more likely to give a great benefits package to full-time employees, usually not offering the same packages to part-time employees.

Job Security and Career Advancement

Job security is certainly better when it comes to working full-time than part-time. Part-time employment is usually occasional, irregular, or seasonal. You could even be working as on-call help, which means you never know when your employers will need you.

As for career advancement, you are more likely to advance as a full-time employee. Part-time employees are less likely to receive promotions, although good employees can sometimes be awarded a long-term commitment and a full-time position.

Work-Life Balance Considerations

You will have a much better work-life balance when working part-time, as this type of employment involves only working for four of five part-time hours per day. It is more difficult to balance everything when you are stuck working for eight hours, coming home feeling exhausted, and not having time to do what you love.

This is an important difference between part time and full time as your mental well-being might be challenged if you end up overworked and burnt out.

Educational or Training Requirements

Full-time employment is more difficult to obtain as you usually need a degree, specific training, and skills to fulfill the job. With part-time employment, you usually need only some skills. You tell the employer you can do the job, ask them what are part time hours and what is the compensation for them, and decide whether you want to get the job.

What Are the Considerations When Choosing Between Part-Time and Full-Time Jobs?

There is more than one difference between part time and full time positions. So, choosing between one or the other takes much consideration. However, the focus should be on several key features that separate part time from full time positions, such as the following:

  • How much do you want to commit to the position? Full-time requires a more serious commitment.
  • How much time do you have to commit to the position? If you are busy, it’s best to go for part-time positions.
  • How big do you want your workload to be? Full-time comes with a bigger workload.
  • Are benefits important to you? If they are, it is best to go for a full-time position.
  • Do you already feel burnt out and want a job that will allow you to have a healthy work-life balance? Then, go for a part-time position.

Consider all these points, and you will know which position is best for you based on what option outweighs the other.

Legal Considerations for Part-Time and Full-Time Jobs

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Each country has specific employment rules, so you must review them and learn what a full-time position entails and what your obligations as a part-time worker would be. You will only know which position is better for you after you read the laws and learn about the work hours, benefits of the job, and compensation.


After reading this detailed guide on the difference between full time and part time employment, we hope you have a clear idea of which option suits your needs. Comparing a part time vs full time job is not the easiest thing to do since both have specific advantages and disadvantages worth considering.

So, when deciding which one to choose, consult the points we made in this article and cross-check them with your needs and preferences.


What is an example of a full-time job?

A full-time job is any job that entails a worker spending between 30 and 40 hours per week completing work assignments. An example of a full-time job would be an educational, medical, or office worker whose work involves 30 hours for five or six days.

Why do you want to work part-time?

One of the biggest reasons people choose to work part-time over full-time is because they get more free time to spend on their education, doing some other kind of work, or having more free time to spend with friends or family.

What is the lowest hours for full-time?

The minimum and maximum full-time and part-time employment hours could vary between companies. However, a job is considered full-time if it entails working at least 30 to 32 hours per week. The maximum hours per week is 40, whereas anything above that is considered working overtime.

What is the most common full-time job?

According to recent statistics in the US, the most common full-time job is a cashier. A person can work solely as a cashier full-time or full time employee at a market, which could include working at the cashier, doing inventory, etc.

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