How would you interpret this?

(5 Posts)
tugamommy Portugal Tue 15-Oct-13 11:15:44

Just started a new job. Contract says: normal working hours are 9am to 5.30pm.

I asked for a bit of flexibility around this, starting 30mins later in some days and 30mins earlier in others. I had expected my manager to just agree to it but she decided to do it 'right' and ask HR and they said no because it's not in the contract....

Before you ask, this flexibility would have no impact on business and is common practice in this industry. We are actually expected to be flexible ourselves on occasions in order to accommodate calls with colleagues in diff time zones.

I'm so, so annoyed with this. First because no one told me (and fkexibility was discussed with the HR person who interviewed me), then because the contract in my opinion is not worded dtrongly enough to suggest they're this strict and lastly because it totally messes up our pick up / drop off logistics. I can't drop off at school or I wont be in before 9.15 and I cant pick up from nursery and after school club because nursery closes at 5.30.

I'm so annoyed and frustrated I just want to scream! I feel like I had a better work life balance when I was commuting for 3 hours a day than now that work is only 15mins away....

Needless to say my manager doesn't havve any children and has never managed anyone with children.

Any suggestions / advice? I really dont want to whinge on my first weeks and job is amazing in all other aspects. .

Sam100 Tue 15-Oct-13 17:00:05

I think there are 2 ways round this (btw no HR experience - just lots of working with kids!)

- you agree informally with your manager that your contract hours are as they are but on a practical basis you will start at 9:30 on x days and at 8:30 on y days. Ok as long as you are not having to clock in etc,

- or you invoke your rights under the flexible working legislation - this is a formal process which requires you to write to the company outlining what you want and explaining how it will not impact the business because ...

Only problem with 2 is that you need to have worked there continuously for 26 weeks before you can request.

I would go back to the HR person that interviewed you and remind them of your discussions and explain that the conditions under which you accepted the job are the hours you need - please can they amend the contract to reflect this.

NomDeClavier Tue 15-Oct-13 17:00:48

Have you put your request for flexible working in writing? It is a modification of your contract but you have the right to submit a request and the onus is on them to prove why it's detrimental to the business.

CaptainSweatPants Tue 15-Oct-13 17:04:19

Well those hours are pretty standard
Does the school have a breakfast club?
Could you find a nursery that closes at 6pm, 5.30 is unusually early
Would a childminder be easier, they could do drop offs at school & pick up & look after nursery age child?

I'd look at different childcare options rather than cause problems in a job you like

tugamommy Portugal Wed 16-Oct-13 13:23:35

Thanks everyone.

yes, I will apply for flexible work officially but was hoping not to have to wait the 6 months for it...

captain: yes, these are standard hours but there's no business need for this inflexibility and that's what I'm annoyed about. Also, I won't move ds out of his nursery, he's really settled and happy there. It's the last year before school and I think it would just be cruel to change it now.

The thing is dh can do the school and nursery runs., it's far from ideal but he can do it, the problem is I want to do it too, I want to chat to the other parents and arrange playdates and talk to the carers, etc. It's important to me. If there was a strong work reason why I couldn't then it would be fine but its definitely not the case here...

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