Advice & Support

Colleague granted reduced hours and I am refused: ask the expert

Colleague granted reduced hours and I am refused: ask the expert

I am currently on maternity leave and due to return to work in June. I have applied to reduce my hours from full time to 25 hours a week. Another colleague in my office has also asked to reduce her hours and even though no decision had been made on her application when mine went in, she has had her hours accepted on a tempory 3 month trial yet I have been refused mine. They have said that the hours left from me reducing and those of the other colleague (which amounts to 20 hours) does not warrant the cost and effort of training up a new employee part time and that we do not have adequate space within our department for another worker- even though there is adequate space and another colleague who also only works part time only works mornings so we could desk share. They also said that we wouldn't meet targets if I went part time and that work could not be rota'd fairly. Why weren't these reasons also said to my colleague? They went on to say that while I have been off on my maternity leave, my work has been covered by my team leader which has meant that some of her own work has not been done and this is another reason they are refusing my request.  I feel this is unfair as firstly I am not even there as I am on maternity leave and secondly, how they have arranged to cover my maternity leave is nothing to do with me, and if they haven't managed to fulfil some work then why have they agreed to my other colleague's request to go part time? Please can you help in any way. I am finding this very upsetting and stressful and it is ruining the rest of my maternity leave. I really do think I am being treat unfairly.

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Flexible request due to relocation turned down: ask the expert

Flexible request due to relocation turned down: ask the expert

I am currently on maternity leave and due to return in April. Prior to being on maternity leave I worked full time hours, but had flexible working where I started early and finished early a couple of days a week. Since being on maternity leave the business has relocated. For me this will add at least an hour each way to my journey. Because of this, I had a meeting with my line manager requesting to change my working hours to enable me to still be able to take and collect my eldest daughter from school a couple of days a week. This wouldn't be possible working my old hours, due to the additional travel time. In my new request I proposed working 1 day from home and the other days starting early and finishing early. I have had my request turned down for two reasons, 1)requires my presence in the office to meet reporting dates imposed therefore a fixed day working from home is not compatible 2) requires working closely with team especially when time pressured which will not happen if I finish early or work from home.
I feel I have a strong argument against both these issues, but would like another opinion. From Oct12-Mar13 the rest of my team relocated and I remained in the old building and therefore I spent 5-6 months working independently even with the time pressures and strict reporting dates. To me this demonstrates that if I worked from home 1 day a week, it would be no different to when I was separate to the rest of the team. My other argument would be that I have always finished early at least 2 days a week without any issues and have carried out my role to a good standard and there has never been a complaint that my early finishing was causing an issue with deadlines. My employer has proposed another role in the business which would allow me to work from home 1 day, but work in the office the remaining 4 days doing regular working hours. This wouldn't fit with my childcare arrangements. Do I have a strong case to appeal the company's decision?

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Turned down for reduced hours, but colleague had her hours accepted: ask the expert

Turned down for reduced hours, but colleague had her hours accepted: ask the expert

I am currently on maternity leave and due to return to work in June. I have applied to reduce my hours from full time to 25 hours a week. Another colleague in my office has also asked to reduce her hours and even though no decision had been made on her application when mine went in, she has had her hours accepted on a tempory 3 month trial yet I have been refused mine. They have said that the hours left from me reducing and those of the other colleague (which amounts to 20 hours) does not warrant the cost and effort of training up a new employee part time and that we do not have adequate space within our department for another worker- even though there is adequate space and another colleague who also only works part time only works mornings so could desk share. They also said that we wouldn't meet targets if I went part time and that work could not be rota fairly. Why weren't these reasons also said to my colleague? They also claim workload issues while I was on maternity leave, yet still let my colleague who does the same job as me reduce her hours. They said that applications to go part time are "first come first served" for which I feel I have been completely overlooked and discounted as I am not there so haven't been part of office discussions and did not know my colleague was also applying to reduce her hours .Please can you help in any way. I am finding this very upsetting and stressful and it is ruining the rest of my maternity leave. 

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Related tags: Flexible Working

Can an organisation go back on an informally agreed flexible working request?: ask the expert

Can an organisation go back on an informally agreed flexible working request?: ask the expert

I would like some advice for my husband. I have an 8-month-old daughter and returned back to work 4 days a week back in December. To avoid paying high childcare costs my husband had informally spoken to his manager about changing his working pattern (was working Mon-Fri, but wanted to change to work Thur-Sun) so that he could look after our daughter whilst I was at work. He 'informally' informed them of this back in October and it was agreed. He has been working this new pattern since December, but was called into a meeting last week as they said it could not continue! He explained the situation regarding caring for his child and the right to request flexible working and they have now asked him to fill in a formal request. Can they now change their mind as we hadn't put in a written request or received their agreement in writing back in October?

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Refused part-time hours: ask the expert

Refused part-time hours: ask the expert

I am currently on maternity leave and have applied to reduce my hours from full time to 25 hours a week. Another colleague in my office who does the exact same job as me has also asked to reduce her hours and even though no decision had been made on her application when mine went in, she has had her hours accepted on a tempory 3 month trial yet I have been refused mine. They have said that  the hours left from me reducing and those of the other colleague (which amounts to 20 hours) does not warrant the cost and effort of training up a new employee part time and that we do not have adequate space within our department for another worker- even though  there is adequate space and another colleague who also only works part time only works mornings so could desk share. They also said that we wouldn't meet targets if I went part time and that work could not be rota'd fairly. Why weren't these reasons also said to my colleague? They went on to say that while I have been off on my maternity leave, my work has been covered by my team leader which has meant that some of her own work has not been done and this is another reason they are refusing my request. I feel this is unfair as firstly I am not even there as I am on maternity leave and secondly, how they have arranged to cover my maternity leave is nothing to do with me, and if they haven't managed to fulfil some work then why have they agreed to my other colleague's request to go part time? They said that applications to go part time are "first come first served". I made it clear before I went on maternity leave that I would be wanting to return on a part time basis as we cannot afford full-time childcare and my husband is away working all week so I am our daughter's sole carer through the week. I feel when my colleague made her application, I should have been contacted to discuss my situation. If I cannot return full time which I cannot and therefore have to leave if my appeal is lost then they would have to pay to train up a new recruit anyway so how would that reason about the cost of employing hold up on appeal? Furthermore if they did employ another part time member of staff to do the 20 hours then all the other reasons they have used to refuse my request would be solved. They have also stated that when doing training it is done on a full time basis (which I knew about) and so part timers take the extra hours worked flexibly - they have said that I could not do this as it would impact even more on other staff members and stop us meeting deadlines, but how is it ok for the other part timers to do this but then refuse me the same right?

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Related tags: Flexible Working