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Rights when returning to work...

(26 Posts)
jaabaar Fri 15-Oct-10 15:44:50


I am a bit confused about my rights when returning. Found the following online:

"you have a right to the same job and the same terms and conditions as if you hadn’t been away, If you come back after Additional Maternity Leave. However, if your employer shows it is not reasonably practical to return to your original job (eg because the job no longer exists) you do not have the same right. In that case, you must be offered alternative work with terms and conditions as if you hadn’t been away."

After I left 3 people were employed to do my job. These 3 people are still all there on my return. The plan my office has is to give me my bosses job (who is retiring in Dec and me starting in Jan) and of course my wages will be much less than my bosses.

Question: Do I have the right to the job I had as it still exists (just some one else is doing it now) or do i HAVE to take the promotion/new job which I dislike???

Thanks..... (what would I do wihtout the mumsnet wizzards??????)

hairytriangle Fri 15-Oct-10 16:09:25

How long were you on ml for?

jaabaar Fri 15-Oct-10 16:19:11

From Jan to Nov then added holidays I was due and bck to work middle Jan. So I had OML and part of AML.

flowerybeanbag Fri 15-Oct-10 16:34:02

You don't have the right to your old job if it's not practical to do that, and if it's been divvied up between 3 people I expect they would be reasonable to say that.

Whether you have to accept the other job depends whether it's suitable for you or not. Does it adequately fit your skills/experience?

jaabaar Fri 15-Oct-10 16:53:29

I have patly worked together with my boss and partly know the work. They want to give me this job as anyone they employed to do it while I was away has run away. I am the cheap option. I really do not like this job at all. do I still have to accept it??

My job was split up because nobody was able to handle it, i was compeltely overworked!

jaabaar Fri 15-Oct-10 16:55:53

I am so anxious and dreading this that I am unable to sleep and feel constantly sick to my stomach. Have to go in next week to talk to my office. I just am not the type to take over the new job. Just feel in tears about all of this. Been taken advantage of for 7 years. nobody ever listen when I said I am overworked. However they do employ 3 to do my job and have to cancel 25% of accounts asthey do not know how to handle it. Sorry for going on, guess I just needed to write it down ((

flowerybeanbag Fri 15-Oct-10 17:04:38

If the job is not suitable for you, you don't have to accept it. Not liking it isn't enough I'm afraid. What's so bad about it compared with your previous job?

hairytriangle Fri 15-Oct-10 17:20:40

I'm presuming that as there are now three people doing maternity cover for your old role, then you are entitled to the 'spot' that one of them fills in the organisation? ie: the job still exists.

or have they restructured and made three seperate roles which include all the tasks you used to do? (eg each person does different components of the job?)

flowerybeanbag Fri 15-Oct-10 17:39:31

If the job is being covered by three different people, rather than one person coming in on exactly the same basis doing the same tasks, it sounds as though there could certainly be an argument that it no longer exists in its previous form.

In any case the job not existing is only one example of why it might not be reasonably practical to give the woman on mat leave her old job back.

From what we know so far, if the available vacant job is suitable, there would be no need for the employer to kick one of the three people out of their job imo.

jaabaar Tue 19-Oct-10 18:50:57

The new job is being a buyer for a major company. Before I was doing logistics, order processing, letters of credit etc. So it is a totally different job. I am not the kind of person to drive a hard bargain and to get the best deal. I am more the person to organize and facilitate. So me personally do not think the job is suitable for me. Under this circumstances, do I have to take it??

flowerybeanbag Tue 19-Oct-10 19:52:34

It's not for anyone here to say whether or not you have to take that job.

If you don't think it's suitable, say so then see what their reaction is. If all the job is completely different, ie there are no tasks you would be doing that you have done before or have any knowledge or experience of, then that's more likely to be a reasonable claim to make.

However you say you worked with the person doing this job and partly know the work, which makes it less clear cut. If you raise the concern that you are not the kind of person to drive a hard bargain and they respond by saying that they will get you some decent negotiation skills training, that becomes even more difficult.

But the bottom line is whether or not the job is suitable, or you can receive training and development enough to make it suitable enough, is between you and your employer. If you are convinced it's not suitable, say so, in writing, spelling out why, and then take it from there.

jaabaar Mon 25-Oct-10 08:55:38


I have been to my office to discuss.

a) They are very upset about the wording of the letter requesting part time (e.g. the standard template you can download from Been told I work there 7 years should not have used such letters but just spoken to them....

b) Been offered job of my boss which I will have to take. Which includes assisting 4 employees who took my job when they get stuck.

c) 3 days part time denied saying I have to be there every day for emails and at same time saying I cannot do this from home.
They told me 4 days might be possible.

d) Used to start working early for free at 8.45 (official start is 9.30). Requested early paid start which was rejected as I should work only from 9.30 (before they encouraged others to start early like me)

e) Wage increases have not been discussed. As I believe this is a promotion I think it should be brought up?

e) Travel time to work is 1 hour one way. Nursery opens 8-1 1-6. Half days cost more than full days. If I dont start early will not be able to make half day. How to make this work?

Mon Full day £ 54.50
Tue Full day £ 54.50
Wed Half £ 32.50
Thur Half £ 32.50
Per week £173.50
net Wages p/w £188.00

This is if I work 7 hours full and 3.5 hours half time not compressed.

I have to give them an answer by tomorrow. What a wonderful year it was. All has to come to an end.....

How do people make it work ((. I will take home £14.50 a week. My husband works as well. However in order to cover mortgage and bills I need to take clear money at least 400 per month.

Please advise if you find any days better to work then others regarding school etc or generally ANY advise would be so much appreciated....

frgr Mon 25-Oct-10 17:02:55

"e) Wage increases have not been discussed. As I believe this is a promotion I think it should be brought up?"

Damn right it should, i didn't want to read and run because battery laptop going again, but wanted to point this one out - do NOT just accept what they say, bring up that you'll have more responsbilities/etc and ask a market rate. go in with proof if required (do your research - can't possibly do all that on this numbered item from your list alone - far too little time).

Example - my sister joined a company, stayed for 2 years only meekly asking for pay rises just below inflation on both annual appraisels. denied, no budget. she left, she saw her job advertised with about £10k more as the STARTING salary for the training period. scumbags. this experience she had has made me realise in full colour that you get what you ask for, and employers are all to happy to take advantage where they can!

orchardlime Mon 25-Oct-10 21:08:11

So, you've been offered your boss's job. I'm no employment expert, but would say that looks to any reasonable person like a promotion, and therefore should have a higher salary.

Why don't you thank them for offering you this promotion and ask what the extra salary will be? Perhaps even suggest a figure - would your ex-boss even let you know what he/she earned?

It's not your employer's responsibility to sort out your childcare, and flexible working only has to be considered, not granted if there are business reasons not to grant it. Sound like they are offering a compromise of four days, which might well be worth considering.

If a nursery isn't going to work for you, have you investigated childminders who might offer more flexibility time-wise?

And the cost of childcare, remember, is a proportion of your joint household income, not just your own income - both you and your dh are working so why should you consider it's just coming out of your salary?

I don't really understand your breakdown of hours. Could you do four full days (on a pro-rata enhanced salary as part of your "promotion")?

jaabaar Tue 26-Oct-10 16:13:24

FRGR: Not asking for what i want has been my downfall for most of my life. I have been doing so many free hours (up to 1.45 h a day). Then had to beg for an hour off for checks during pregnancy. I am the naive kind of person who things if you work hard and are reliable and give your all you will be appreciated. Never asked for wage increases. Always got just below inflation.

Tasks and resonsiblities have increased greatly in the time i was there - not salary. I just have the impression it is "rude" to ask for wage increases. It is my own fault at the end of the day.

ORCHARDLIME: Yes it does come out of both salaries, however if the wages we obtain by putting her in nursery just barely covers the costs it is not working. We will be too short of money.

I was thinking of child minder however I have no one to help me if childminder wants holidays or is sick etc. No close family near by at all. Nursery better in this respect.

Another point is that my boss was working part time as well one year before retiring. I think 3 days, not sure. Will find out. If he was working 3 days surely I could mention that?

I just feel so used ( but guess that is life!

I will suggest 2 full days and 2 half days. Means i will still have all the travel and dropping collecting for 4 days but at least more time with my baby. AND will ONCE in my life ask for a wage increase.

Lets see...

THank you for taking the time to read....

frgr Wed 27-Oct-10 21:49:12

"Not asking for what i want has been my downfall for most of my life. I have been doing so many free hours (up to 1.45 h a day). Then had to beg for an hour off for checks during pregnancy. I am the naive kind of person who things if you work hard and are reliable and give your all you will be appreciated."

This attitude is what leads so many people into being taken advantage of, my sister for one. I've also seen the same thing at my husband's previous place of work - he knows for a fact that his (female, co-incidentally) team leader was paid the same as him (give or take a hundred or so quid a year) because he saw her payslip as a complete accident. Since his previous place wasn't really the sort of place where gender discrimination really mattered, it had a female MD and quite a high proportion of women there despite being in a technical field (he's a programmer), we always assumed it was because H is quite confident and ALWAYS went into his appraisels with an idea of exactly how much he was worth extra compared to the last time, and took paperwork in to prove it (new training undertaken, performance goals met, good client feedback, whatever).... basically it was down to negotiation and whoever had a silver tongue - NOT who deserved it! If you could convince them you deserved it, it was fine - but only if you asked.

That, and my sister's experience, taught me a lot about how the world of work and salaries is done (having worked in the charity sector since uni I've not really been in such a hard ball position myself and am actually paid about the market rate)

DO NOT let them take advantage of you - check what the market rate is, take proof, and don't be afraid to ask for more time to discuss things (unless you've already made a decision, i see in your OP they'd given you a tight deadline)

happyshopper Thu 28-Oct-10 13:50:57

Most nurseries have a daily rate and a rate for full time. Sometimes the full time rate works out less. Have you enquired at the nursery as to what this is? You don't need to put the dc in full time but it may work out cheaper. My DC went to nursery 4 days per week but it worked out cheaper for me to pay full time than 4 days.
Does your company or Dh's offer childcare vouchers? This can reduce the cost slightly.
Are you entitled to any tax credits? Have a look at the hm revenue and customs website - there's a tax credit calculator you can see what you should get.

If it is a promotion, which it sounds like it is, you should be entitled to more money.

annh Thu 28-Oct-10 14:15:13

I'm not sure if i understand but are you saying that you will earn £188 p/w net for working what amounts to 3 full days per week? You have mentioned full days Mon/Tues and half-days Wed/Thurs. And this is as a buyer for a major company? Sounds shockingly little money to me for the work. I hope this is based on your salary at the moment, rather than what you might expect in the new role.

I do think the time to ask about a salary increase was when you had the meeting, I'm sure they would have been expecting you to ask? And remember, you are actually in a strong position. If you don't take up the role, they will find it very difficult to recruit someone in the remaining timeframe and according to you others who have worked in the role while you have been away have all run away!

frgr Thu 28-Oct-10 15:02:09

annh, isn't it still about £10.50 an hour? That's an amazing wage if you think about the entry level qualifications for a buyer's job (not that I know about it in great detail, I'm sure good ones are worth their weight in gold). But when I look at how much I'm earning it's slightly less than that, and I have 2 degrees (although work in the charity sector in a tiny company). And I'm paid the market rate, roughly. (When I factor in flexibility, lack of overtime required, etc)

£188 pw net is
£188 / 75 * 100 = £250.66 gross approx
£250.66 / 3 days per week = £83.55 pd gross
£83.55 pd gross / 8.0 hrs pd = £10.44 an hour

Over ten quid an hour? That's not shockingly little money, that's massively above minimum wage! And it works out to about £20k a year... for 3 days a week...?!

Have I made a massive mistake in my maths somewhere? I must have..

jaabaar Wed 17-Nov-10 23:06:26

Indeed it seems you have made a massive mistake!

10.44 per hour
8 hours pd = £83.52 per day gross
1 week = £250.56 per week
1 year = £13,029.12

Far off from £20,000 for 3 days a week....

From this I have to deduct £2,800 for travel...

It requires many years experience in the field to take over this specialised side of buying. Also I have to manage 4 people who took over my job during maternity leave...

I also have degrees and over 18 years experience.

I do think it is shockingly little when you take home £15 a week clear money...? How much less can it be to be shockingly little -£ 10???

Oh dear, it is not easy...

hairytriangle Thu 18-Nov-10 07:41:41

But you won't be taking so little home.... You've deducted nursery fees and travel costs which you actually take home. Or am I getting confused?

jaabaar Thu 18-Nov-10 23:22:21

Of course I want take home only £15 pounds.

I put DD in nursery because i have to work.
Going to work and paying for her nursery to enable me to go to work means I will have £15 pounds left for mortgage, bills, food etc.

I have used the wrong words "taking home money".

Basically if I would stay home and not going to work I would be £15 a week worser off...

My gross take home pay is £13,000.

violethill Sat 20-Nov-10 12:44:50

It's quite usual for a half day at nursery to cost more pro rata than full days. Fair enough really, as there is no guarantee that they can fill the remaining half day with another child, yet they still have to pay their staff. I would recommend looking for a childminder who can be more flexible and you can pay for the hours you want.

"Basically if I would stay home and not going to work I would be £15 a week worser off..."

I agree it's frustrating to realise there can be very little difference financially between working and paying childcare, and staying home, but tbh, at this stage in life, you need to look at the longer term gains. When you have children, you need to alter your mindset about earnings: a big chunk of it will now be eaten up with childcare.

HappyMummyOfOne Sat 20-Nov-10 13:04:43

Did you not think about the costs of childcare before having a child though? You must have known you would have had to pay childcare and that you take home income would be far less if going from FT to PT so it can hardly be a shock. Even if you negotiated to work from home and got the three days you would still need childcare anyway as unfair to expect them to pay you whilst you are home also looking after your child.

Plenty of mothers only just break even or work at a loss in the early years to keep their jobs but like other posters have pointed out, childcare is a household cost not just the mothers.

jaabaar Wed 24-Nov-10 22:56:30

Of course I have thought of it. That is the reason I only had my first child at the age of 40... despite having married at the age of 31.

Going from FT to PT is not that huge of a differnece proportionally. If I have to pay full time Childcare and full time work again I will prob break even.

The biggest drawback is not having one single family member nearby to help out in emergencies.

I suppose, c'est la vie!

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