Can I request to work compressed hours?

I currently work full time 37.5 hours per week. Our company closes at 3 pm on Fridays, but they allow us the flexibility to leave earlier on Fridays if we make up the hours during the rest of the week. I want to take a day off on Friday but still do full-time hours, i.e 9.5 hours for four days. Company policy will not allow that. They have offered me to go on a pro rata contract which will allow me to take Friday off. I want to know if there is legally any cap on the number of hours I can do pro rata. Can I still do 37.7 hours in four days on a pro rata contract? Can the company legally refuse to allow me to work certain number of hours on pro rata?

There is nothing in law to prevent you compressing 37.5 hours into four days. Indeed many employees do just that. Equally, there is nothing in law giving you the right to work compressed hours.

If you have not already, you should make a formal request for flexible working for compressed hours, setting out how you envisage this working. You should deal with how you would deal with any work that would usually be done on a Friday (for example, you could agree to periodically check your emails remotely and deal with anything urgent). Your employer can only refuse a request for a good business reason, not simply that their “policy” does not allow it. The better the case you can make for how it will work, the harder this will be for them.

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