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To ask to reduce my hours after being in a new job for 3 months?

(32 Posts)
Twinklestar2 Mon 09-May-16 16:29:54

I have a feeling you are going to say IABU sad

I started a new job 3 months ago after being made redundant whilst on maternity leave. I work full time. My 21-month old son was at nursery 4 days a week and with my husband 1 day a week, however my husband’s job now requires him to be at work 5 days a week so my son will be going to nursery full time starting this week.

I had Friday off with my son and it was glorious! We had such a lovely day. He’s at such a fun age. It reminded me of how lovely having the summer off with your child is.

I really want to ask my work if I can work 4 days a week but my husband and best friend says it’s too soon in to a new role to ask. But the company I work for is run by 2 women so they understand about childcare issues – they already let me finish early so I can get home for bedtime – and other women work part time here because they have children. They also employ contractors who work purely from home and come in once a month or so.

But then again I’m nervous to ask because they have employed me on a full-time basis to do the job and I am new.

What would you do? Has anyone been in a similar situation?

SouperSal Mon 09-May-16 16:35:39

Might compressed hours be an option? Full time in 4 days?

SouperSal Mon 09-May-16 16:36:18

Whatever you decide to ask for you need to sell the benefits to the employer. It being better for you isn't necessarily good for their business.

GingerMerkin Mon 09-May-16 16:40:14

Worth a try but could be a risk too far. My ex boss did this and first opportunity was made redundant.

Twinklestar2 Mon 09-May-16 16:40:28

Ah I should’ve added they are bringing in a flexi new policy where you work the required amount of hours per week but you do them however you want – so you can work extra some days and less on others, this is mostly to help working mums.

Also, the company I work for is a workplace strategy and interior design company for offices, so they are big advocates of flexible working, agile working, working from home etc etc.

hownottofuckup Mon 09-May-16 16:42:10

It's worth asking

YoungGirlGrowingOld Mon 09-May-16 16:46:26

I don't think YABU to ask, but be prepared for them to say no. They sound very progressive - that kind of request would go down like a shit sandwich where I work, but your workplace sounds more promising smile

Be prepared to "sell" it to them - they recruited a FT person and may need persuasion that the role be done over fewer days/hours.

herecomethepotatoes Mon 09-May-16 16:56:34

I'm with your husband and friend. I work for a very traditional company ina very traditional environment though.

I haven't been in your shoes OP, nor has anyone asked me. If you asked me then it would probably be a no due to being unable to efficiently jobshare 4 days to 1. It would also be an unofficial black mark against you wondering how committed you are.

You've said they already accommodate an early finish. I think you should be happy with that until you'e been there longer OP.

What do you mean by "compressed hours" SouperSal. If one of my staff told me they could do their job in 80% of their salaried hours then I'd worry about my management. They either aren't being efficiently deployed or are producing substandard work. If I've understood you correctly then this is a terrible idea.

UpsiLondoes Mon 09-May-16 16:59:56

She means you work 40 hours a week but 10 hours in 4 days as opposed to 8 hours in 5 days.

whois Mon 09-May-16 17:03:22

Yup working full time hours over 4 days could be a good option, if you aren't physically needed every day?

whois Mon 09-May-16 17:03:44

Although TBH I'd wait until you've been there at least 6 months.

herecomethepotatoes Mon 09-May-16 17:05:12

UpsiLondoes She means you work 40 hours a week but 10 hours in 4 days as opposed to 8 hours in 5 days.

Clearly. Sorry for being thick. I'm jet lagged and it's nearly midnight in HK.

I'd still hold off this for a while OP. Proposing flexi-time or compressed hours may be an idea in the future but, as you said, they've recently employed you to work x hours as that's the job they see you doing and the amount of time the envisage it taking.

lionheart70 Mon 09-May-16 17:07:29

Yanbu. I asked after 3 months in my job, and my request was accepted. That said, my boss was lovely and they were a family friendly company. So I guess it depends a bit on the lie of the land.

AnchorDownDeepBreath Mon 09-May-16 17:07:49

How long was your probation?

I think I'd be cautious, at just three months. It sounds like it will be possible, where you work, but I'd just be cautious of pushing my luck too soon. Especially if the job is good and you enjoy it, which it sounds like you do! And they've already adjusted your end time for bedtime.

Don't be discouraged, though, it doesn't sound like you'll be rejected when you do ask - just orchestrate the asking carefully.

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Mon 09-May-16 17:11:09

The question isn't 'should you ask' but 'how can you do the work you're contracted to do in a more flexible way'. So if you can prove that, say, working compressed hours would work well for the business then put that to them. But if it's a case of you're twiddling your thumbs for 20% of the time, or that you don't have a plan for the work you won't be able to do, then don't ask. It has to be a benefit for them, not for you.

Personally, I would take a dim view of someone saying to me 'my husband can't or won't work part time so I have to' - which is kind of how your post reads. Whether it was the right move for the business or not, I'd be irked that the other partner in the relationship changing their circumstances automatically meant my new ft resource had to change their circs too. So think carefully how you present your case.

Twinklestar2 Mon 09-May-16 17:12:07

My probation was 3 months - I passed it the week before last.

I am so torn between asking cause they're so family-friendly and pushing my luck!

I do love the job and enjoy it and they are happy with my performance so far.

Twinklestar2 Mon 09-May-16 17:14:22

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett - I wouldn't mention my husband's work at all. We have been lucky so far that he has been able to work around having my son on a Friday but it just isn't feasible anymore.

Twinklestar2 Mon 09-May-16 17:17:48

Might be worth adding that my role is a new role within the company, they have never had someone doing my role before. So there’s a lot to do and I am responsible for that part of the business but then again, because it’s a brand new role, I could show them that it could be done in 4 days…..!

And also, I had Friday off and they were fine without me….


I was recommended for the role by a former colleague – I wish I had asked at the interview for a 4-day week!

YoungGirlGrowingOld Mon 09-May-16 17:32:24

Hmm in that case I would wait another 3 months. Irrespective of the truth of the matter, it's going to look like "phew, I got through probation - time to reduce my hours!" (I manage a team, one of whom works flexibly, and I would be a bit hmm about the timing - although as I said earlier, our senior management are dinosaurs).

NattyTile Mon 09-May-16 17:36:12

I'd ask. But I'd make it very clear that I was happy to continue to work existing hours if it wasn't possible.

Twinklestar2 Mon 09-May-16 17:39:41

Young girl - that's interesting, never thought that it could be perceived like that.

YoungGirlGrowingOld Mon 09-May-16 17:44:52

It may not be but I don't see much disadvantage in waiting (say) 3 months and building up a bit more goodwill. If they refuse because (unofficially, of course) they think it's a bit cheeky to ask immediately after probation, then you have "shot your bolt" (as my DM would say!)

I think your best option is trying the compressed hours, then you don't have apay cut and still get a day with DS win win all round!

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Mon 09-May-16 18:09:53

OP's not going to be able to do compressed hours and finish early to get home for bedtime though.

expatinscotland Mon 09-May-16 18:21:29

'But the company I work for is run by 2 women so they understand about childcare issues – they already let me finish early so I can get home for bedtime'

Goodwill works both ways. They've shown you they are flexible and understanding of your wish to be with your child at bedtime. Asking them for this right after you passed probation smacks of p-taking. Sorry.

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