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New contract, help needed with overtime

(12 Posts)
Firedemon Wed 04-Feb-15 12:48:12

Recently got a job offer (yay!) and I need a little bit of help clarifying something within the contract please!

I'm worried that I might be expected to work unpaid overtime. I know another person who does the same job and I'm aware that she often does late nights and long days.

The part of the contract which mentions anything like this goes:

"The employee's normal working hours shall be 40 hours per week at such time as are agreed with the employee's line manager usually on Mondays to Saturday's and such additional hours as are necessary for the proper performance of her duties.

The employee agrees that the limit in regulation 4 of the working time regulations 1998 does not apply during the appointment and that her average working time may therefore exceed 48 hours in each seven day period. The employee can withdraw her agreement at any time by giving the company three months written notice"

Does this mean that I basically have to work as many hours as the job takes with no payment for hours worked over 40 a week?

Hoping someone can help me smile

flowery Wed 04-Feb-15 13:23:27

Well, technically yes it does mean that. But basically it's what you put in a contract for salaried jobs where you don't expect the person to arrive at 8.59 and be out of the door at 5.01 regardless of what's happening with their tasks/responsibilities, and don't plan to pay them overtime if they do stay beyond what is technically their contractual end time.

How much requirement there will actually be in reality for staying a bit late or whatever will depend on the job itself and also the seniority. What sort of job is it?

Is it not being able to always leave dead-on that is concerning you, or were you anticipating extra pay, or is there another concern?

Firedemon Wed 04-Feb-15 13:33:26

Thanks for your reply flowery!

It's a job that involves a lot of traveling across various sites so I anticipate a lot of commuting time.

I suppose I'm worried that if things get busy I'll end up working say, a 60 hour week, then as an hourly average I'm barely over minimum wage.

This is a job that dues come with a good amount of responsibility and I will be supporting a reasonable sized team of people.

I feel like it's a good opportunity and it's what I've wanted for a long time. I think there will be further opportunities within this company gif me at some point.

Enidblytonrules Wed 04-Feb-15 15:15:18

When were such contracts invented. I have worked since mid 1970s and have never been on such a contract - in one post I used to work long hours in accounts during 'year end' and was either paid or given TOIL for every hour that I worked. Senior managers were known to be on 'as many hours' contracts but over the course of the year the hours usually equalled out to the number for which they were paid.

My roles have been supervisory/lower management roles NOT minimum wage type roles and to me these contracts seem exploitative - my question is 'are you allowed to reduce your hours doing quiet periods?'

The OP stated that working 60 hours per week would take her average hourly amount to near minimum wage which means on a 40 hour per week contract equates with around £10 per hour - not a massive rate.

I would only expect to be on such a contract if I had a job where I earned enough to pay higher rate tax!

LordEmsworth Wed 04-Feb-15 15:34:29

I have been working for 15 years, and it has always been in my contract. It is an expectation in my industry.

However, some employers have been more flexible than others. At my current place of work, my manager is happy for me to take hours back as & when - I don't need to agree it with her in advance, although I prefer to. Other managers have frowned on taking any time back.

I would check whether there is an expectation that you will work 60 hour weeks every week, or whether this is exceptional - that would make a difference to me, as exceptional is fine. You don't want to end up in a job that you can't do within your contracted hours - that way lies madness...

Ellypoo Wed 04-Feb-15 16:24:08

I have been employed for over 15 years too and it has always been in my contracts, and is a standard clause in all industries that I have had involvement with, with the exception of those on hourly rates or annualised hours contracts.

flowery Wed 04-Feb-15 17:00:46

I can't say I've ever come across anyone working in any kind of supervisory/management capacity who clocked on and off on the dot or expected paid overtime any time they worked a bit late tbh.

MoreBeta Wed 04-Feb-15 17:14:05

Firedemon - its the 'barely above minimum wage' part of your post that bothers me.

I have worked in high paid professional jobs with that clause and the pay level reflected the long hours. In your case I don't think it does and I would be very wary.

Personally I would take the job but keep looking for another. If you find they are out to exploit you then you need a better place to go pronto. This sort of unpaid work is very common and far too common now for staff on pretty low wages that used to be very regular 9 - 5 type jobs.

Flexible working is fine where there is some give and take but you can bet your boots that if you asked for time off in lieu or additional holiday if you did more than 40 hours - they wont agree. This is a job that will definitely be more than 40 hours a week regardless of contract.

Enidblytonrules Wed 04-Feb-15 17:52:24

The accounts job I had was with an insurance company and everybody from filing clerk up to assistant manager level worked 'flexi time' where we clocked on and off each day on a machine that just kept a cumulative count of hours over a 4 week period (not times of logging on and off).

The first 12 hours over the contracted hours for month could be TOIL (flexi days) and anything over that was paid as overtime at 1.5 normal rate.

The overtime or TOIL in excess of 12 hours had to be approved beforehand but TOIL up to 12 hours was included in our contract. If the overtime/excess TOIL was not approved we made sure we did not go over the 12 hours - come in late/go early/long lunch break.

We only had to be in between 10 am and 4 pm and lunch was anytime between 12 noon and 2 pm (minimum half hour break HAD to be taken). Other hours were flexible with weekly contracted 36.75 hours (34.5 in London). Non contributory final salary pension scheme based on 1/60th of final salary for each year of service. This was in early/mid 1980s.

I have felt for ages that employer terms and conditions have really deteriorated over the last 10-15 years.

Firedemon Wed 04-Feb-15 18:47:13

Thank you so much to everyone who has replied.

Morebeta I certainly agree that I would be a lot happier working more than contracted hours if I was getting paid more! Certainly would soften the blow.

Just to clarify to everyone I'm aware that a lot of jobs aren't 9-5 on the dot and I'm not unhappy to be flexible I just don't want to be trapped in a job where I'm expected to work a significantly higher amount of hours than I'm being paid for ya know?

I don't have any other options and to be honest, even though this isn't ideal, I've never had an opportunity like this before blush
I'll only know the true work involved once I'm actually doing the job. I'm hoping that I can find a way to work smarter, rather than longer. I also know that the experience of this job could potentially lead on to better things. I'm trying to be positive!

wobblebobblehat Wed 04-Feb-15 21:42:15

Enidblyton, consider yourself very lucky! Pretty much everyone who works in an office is expected to go above and beyond for no extra remuneration/time off in lieu.

mandy214 Thu 05-Feb-15 14:20:52

I agree, there is certainly no expectation of TOIL or payment for additional hours in my field (law) and an obligation to work over and above your contracted hours every week.

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