FLEXIBLE WORKING FOR ALL
Since 30th June 2014, all employees with at least 26 continuous service have been able to make a formal request to work flexibly.
In other words, you don?t need to have kids to decide that you want to work less time and enjoy life more!
Prior to the change in law, employers were nervous that they would be overwhelmed with floods of claims from employees wanting to take advantage. Thankfully, that hasn?t really happened and the change in the law is not really much of a change at all in practice.
There is no right to be granted a more flexible working pattern, simply that a request must be considered properly within a formal procedure.
The old statutory procedure no longer applies and employers should use existing procedures to consider such applications ? for example as they would a grievance from an employee.
WHAT KIND OF REQUESTS CAN BE MADE?
The straightforward answer to this is ? anything!
The most common type of request continues to be from new parents who want to reduce their working week to accommodate childcare but other examples are:
1. Job Sharing
Two employees may come with a request to share the working week into mornings and afternoons, half weeks each, alternate weeks etc.
2. Home Working
The request may be related to the work location with a request to work part of all of the time from home.
3. Temporary Absence
An employee may need a period of time off work for personal reasons, training or a year-long sabbatical.
HOW TO MAKE A REQUEST AND HOW TO DEAL WITH IT
The statutory form has now been abolished although it effectively contains the same kind of information that an employee needs to include in the initial request which should be in writing.
The request should include:
Details of the change required ie: the number of hours, days etc.
What effect the change would have and how it could be managed
The date of the request and the date of commencement of the change
Confirmation that this is a statutory request for flexible working and whether any previous request has been made and if so, when
The Employer must:
Arrange a meeting to discuss the request as soon as possible
Allow a companion/union representative to attend the meeting
Consider the pros and cons of the request for the employee and the business
Respond to the employee as soon as possible in writing
Allow an appeal if the response is negative
IF YOU NEED ANY FURTHER INFORMATION REGARDING THIS MATTER, PLEASE CONTACT THE PINNACLE PARTNERSHIP.