Publication - Research and analysis

Young people's experiences of precarious and flexible work – Main Report

The research report presents findings on young people's experiences of precarious and flexible work. These work conditions included where young people had for example zero hours contracts, low wages, lack of progression opportunities, dissatisfaction with current employment, or varying hours.

Young people's experiences of precarious and flexible work – Main Report
Appendix E – Profile of respondents

Appendix E – Profile of respondents

A1. Qualitative sample profile

Overall ten focus groups were conducted across Scotland with 16-24 year olds in employment. The locations and number of respondents included in the qualitative research is shown in Table A2.

Table A2: Locations and classifications of qualitative sample
Location No. of focus groups No. of respondents across both groups Urban/Rural SIMD Classification
Dundee 2 17 Urban = 16 Rural = 1 Top 20% SIMD area = 8 Not Top 20% SIMD = 9
Glasgow 2 15 Urban = 12 Rural = 3 Top 20% SIMD area = 3 Not Top 20% SIMD = 12
Edinburgh 2 12 Urban = 12 Rural = 0 Top 20% SIMD area = 2 Not Top 20% SIMD = 10
Peterhead 2 12 Urban = 9 Rural = 3 Top 20% SIMD area = 4 Not Top 20% SIMD = 8
Galashiels 2 10 Urban = 0 Rural = 10 Top 20% SIMD area = 0 Not Top 20% SIMD = 10
Total: 10 66

The sample profile of each focus group is shown in the following tables.

Table A3: Dundee focus groups
Gender Age Industry Sector Urban/Rural SIMD Classification
Females = 8 Males = 9 16 yrs = 1 17 yrs = 4 18 yrs = 3 20 yrs = 1 22 yrs = 2 23 yrs = 2 24 yrs = 4 Hotels and restaurants = 5 Retail = 4 Healthcare = 3 Business services = 2 Construction = 2 Manufacturing = 1 Urban = 16 Rural = 1 Top 20% SIMD area = 8 Not Top 20% SIMD = 9
Total Respondents: 17
Table A4: Glasgow focus groups
Gender Age Industry Sector Urban/Rural SIMD Classification
Females = 9 Males = 6 16 yrs = 3 17 yrs = 1 18 yrs = 1 19 yrs = 2 20 yrs = 1 22 yrs = 3 23 yrs = 3 24 yrs = 1 Hotels and restaurants = 7 Retail = 1 Business services = 2 Financial services = 1 Arts and other services = 1 Other = 3 Urban = 12 Rural = 3 Top 20% SIMD area = 3 Not Top 20% SIMD = 12
Total Respondents: 15
Table A5: Edinburgh focus groups
Gender Age Industry Sector Urban/Rural SIMD Classification
Females = 6 Males = 6 16 yrs = 2 18 yrs = 2 19 yrs = 3 20 yrs = 2 21 yrs = 1 22 yrs = 1 23 yrs = 1 Hotels and restaurants = 4 Retail = 2 Healthcare = 3 Business services = 1 Construction = 1 Other = 1 Urban = 12 Rural = 0 Top 20% SIMD area = 2 Not Top 20% SIMD = 10
Total Respondents: 12
Table A6: Peterhead focus groups
Gender Age Industry Sector Urban/Rural SIMD Classification
Females = 5 Males = 7 16 yrs = 1 17 yrs = 4 18 yrs = 1 20 yrs = 4 21 yrs = 2 Hotels and restaurants = 2 Retail = 5 Healthcare = 1 Agriculture, fisheries, mining and utilities = 2 Other = 2 Urban = 9 Rural = 3 Top 20% SIMD area = 4 Not Top 20% SIMD = 8
Total Respondents: 12
Table A7: Galashiels focus groups
Gender Age Industry Sector Urban/Rural SIMD Classification
Females = 7 Males = 3 16 yrs = 1 17 yrs = 1 18 yrs = 2 19 yrs = 3 21 yrs = 1 22 yrs = 1 24 yrs = 1 Hotels and restaurants = 4 Retail = 2 Agriculture, fisheries, mining and utilities = 2 Education = 1 Manufacturing = 1 Urban = 0 Rural = 10 Top 20% SIMD area = 0 Not Top 20% SIMD = 10
Total Respondents: 10

At each location one focus group was with 16-19 year olds and one focus group was with 20-24 year olds. A good mix of age, gender, urban/rural locations and types of employment was included in the sample. Job types included a wide range of occupations.

The 6-fold urban / rural classification was used to identify and monitor the type of area respondents lived in. This was then grouped into urban and rural (includes accessible/remote towns).

SIMD16 quintiles were used to identify and monitor the proportion of respondents that lived in the 20% most deprived areas and those that didn't.

A2. Quantitative Sample Profile

Tables A8 to A12 below show the survey respondents' demographic profile. Quota sampling was used to ensure that a representative sample of 16-24 year olds across Scotland was achieved. Quotas were set against age, gender and location. There was limited published data on 16-24 year olds in Scotland who are employed, therefore different sources were used to determine the proportion of interviews needed across each of the different variables.

Table A8 shows the proportion of interviews achieved across each location compared to the breakdown for the Scottish population. The proportion of interviews conducted in each area accurately reflects the Scottish population statistics for 16-24 year olds.

Table A8: Locations and classifications of quantitative sample
Location Total Sample Target – Based on % of Scottish population of 16-24 year olds[4]
Central Scotland 9% 9%
Glasgow 14% 14%
Highlands & Islands 8% 8%
Lothians 19% 18%
Mid Scotland & Fife 13% 12%
North East Scotland 14% 14%
South Scotland 12% 13%
West Scotland 12% 12%
Base: All 1,043 100%

Labour Force Survey data (ONS, 2018) showed that there is a higher proportion of 20-24 year olds employed across Scotland than 16-19 year olds, therefore quotas were set to reflect this in the final sample. The final sample achieved had a slightly higher proportion of 16-19 year olds than the target; however a checking process was carried out on the data to ensure this difference did not impact on the overall findings. The checking process involved weighting the full data set by the target age split of 16-19 and 20-24 year olds, to show what the results would have been had the correct proportion of age groups been achieved. This weighted data was compared against the unweighted data and no difference in results was found, it was concluded that this slight difference in age split has had no impact on the overall findings, and the unweighted data has been used in the report. The proportion of males and females in the sample reflect the profile of employed 16-24 year olds across Scotland; 52% of males and 48% of females (see Table A9).

Table A9: Age and gender of the study and sample populations
Age Total Sample Target – Based on % of employed 16-24 year olds in Scotland[5]
16 – 19 years old 30% 26%
20 – 24 years old 70% 74%
Gender
Male (Incl. trans man) 52% 53%
Female (Incl. trans woman) 48% 47%
Base: all 1,043 100%

The respondent's ethnicity was also captured and the overall sample included 4% from an ethnic minority group (see Table A10).

Table A10: Ethnicity of the study and sample populations
Ethnicity Total Sample Target – Based on % of Scottish population of 16-24 year olds[6]
White 96% 94%
Other Ethnic group – Mixed, Asian, Asian Scottish, Asian British, African 4% 6%
Base: all 1,043 100%

It was also important to ensure that the final sample was reflective of the study population in terms of the area in which they live, however, achieving set quotas on this can be challenging alongside other criteria (e.g. gender, age, etc. as per the above). Therefore, whether respondents were living in an urban or rural location, or were identified as living in the 20% most deprived areas were left to fall out of the sampling naturally. The results were monitored throughout the fieldwork period to ensure the final data set was reflective of the Scottish population. The final data set is reflective of the Scottish population of 16-24 year olds (see Table A11).

Table A11: Urban, rural and SIMD classifications for the study and sample populations
Urban / Rural location Total Sample
(Excl. unclassified post codes)
Target
Based on % of Scottish population of 16-24 year olds[7]
Large / Other Urban areas 73% 75%
Accessible / Remote towns or rural areas 27% 25%
Base: all (excl. unclassified postcodes) 830 100%
Top 20% SIMD area Not Top 20% SIMD area Total Sample
(Excl. unclassified postcodes)
Target
Based on % of Scottish population[8]
Most deprived quintile 24% 20%
Other four quintiles 76% 80%
Base: all (excl. unclassified postcodes) 824 100%

All respondents included in the research were either currently employed or had been employed in the last 24 months. The majority of the sample (84%) were currently employed, with 16% not working at the time of the fieldwork but had worked in the previous 24 months.

Just under half (46%) of the sample were in either full time or part time education. Just over half (54%) were not financially independent and relied on family members or someone else to cover their living expenses (Table A12). This was much higher for the younger age-group, with 83% of 16-19 year olds not financially independent. The qualitative findings suggested that those in education and/or not financially independent were less concerned about their contract or working conditions than those who were not in education and/or financially responsible for their own living expenses.

A minority (12%) had someone who was financially dependent on them and this was skewed towards the 20-24 year olds.

Table A12: Employment, education status and financial dependence of the study population
Employment status Total Sample
Currently working 84%
Not currently working but worked in the last 24 months 16%
Education status
Full-time education 37%
Part-time education 9%
Not in education 55%
Financial dependence
Yes I am responsible for my own living expenses, bills, food etc. 45%
No I am dependent on family members/someone else to cover my living expenses, bills, food etc. 54%
Base: all 1,043

As quota controls guided the sample selection, precise margins of error or significance testing are not appropriate, as the sampling type is non-probability. The margins of error outlined below for the sub-groups are therefore indicative, based on an equivalent probability sample.

Table A13: Margins of error for sub-groups
Sub-groups Sample size Margins of error 95% confidence level
Age
16-19 year olds 313 ±1.1% and ±5.5%
20-24 year olds 730 ±0.7% and ±3.6%
Education
In education 474 ±0.9% and ±4.5%
Not in education 569 ±0.8% and ±4.1%
Financial dependence
Financially dependent 466 ±0.9% and ±4.5%
Financially independent 566 ±0.8% and ±4.1%

Contact

Email: youngpersonguar@gov.scot