Advanced search

mumsnet work

Find the perfect family friendly job

Flexible working request refused

(13 Posts)
Bowsandberries10 Fri 23-Oct-15 10:08:18


I really need some help putting together an appeal letter after my request for flexible working was refused.

Basically, I have worked in the same shop for over 10 years always working set days/shifts but recently I have been put on different shift times that my employer knows I cannot do (due to childcare) and have been told that because I work in an airport store I have a fully flexible contract and have to work when required so I have been relying on other staff swapping shifts with me. I was advised by my manager to fill in a flexible working request form-even though I'm not actually asking for a change in my days/hours but just to continue working the hours I have always worked. The rota is being done on a weekly basis meaning I only have 5 days notice for my shifts.

The business reason given is:

The work cannot be reorganised among existing staff; insufficient staff would have a negative impact on our ability to meet our customer demands. Additional staff cannot be recruited which would result in these days being consistently short staffed.

I'm baffled by this as I have done these shifts for a number of years and they have always managed before. My colleagues all understand my situation and are willing to swap shifts with me but I don't think I should have to rely on that week to week.

What makes this even harder on me i recently discovered that my 4 year old has a chronic condition which means that as well as being a single parent I am also her primary carer and need to be home to administer her medication at set times and being forced to change shift times makes this impossible. I have explained all this too them but they saying I am required to be fully flexible.

I would be really grateful if anyone could advise me on how to appeal this decision as I am not able to do what they are asking and feel close to losing my job.

Thank you

biscuitkumquat Fri 23-Oct-15 10:11:59

Have you asked your employer why they have suddenly changed your shifts after 5 years?

Bowsandberries10 Fri 23-Oct-15 10:30:53

Yes they said its in my contract that I have to be fully flexible and they can't accomadate set shifts at an airport store. I've had various managers in that time but the latest one seems to just want me out of the store tbh the first time I spoke to her she asked if I'd considered working somewhere else.

BikeRunSki Fri 23-Oct-15 10:34:29

Would you be able to transfer to a non-airport store and keep your set shifts?

Bowsandberries10 Fri 23-Oct-15 10:36:05

I don't mind doing that but they have put in the letter that they have contacted other stores but there are no current vacancies.

Bowsandberries10 Fri 23-Oct-15 10:41:35

The frustrating thing is that other colleagues are currently working set hours and when I challenged this they said they are required to work other shifts if required-but they never do!

daisychain01 Fri 23-Oct-15 13:26:33

It seems like your current personalcircumstances are going to be difficult to reconcile with your employer. I don't believe there is a legal right to flexible working, it is something your employer and you would negotiate. Bottom line is that your employer has said no.

I'd be inclined to look for work that meets your particular needs better. Relying on your colleagues being prepared to swap with you doesn't sound sustainable if they are withintheir rights to say sorry I can't help at any time

TeaPleaseLouise Fri 23-Oct-15 13:32:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ellypoo Fri 23-Oct-15 13:32:54

Is there something to do with custom & practice though - if you have been working the same shifts for 10 years, how enforceable is the flexibility clause? Especially with only 5 days notice - surely that's impossible for anyone with responsibilities/other jobs to accommodate if they are totally different each week?

Ellypoo Fri 23-Oct-15 13:37:19

I would suggest an employment lawyer / HR specialist though - do you have legal cover on your home insurance? It might be worth calling around and seeing if anyone will give you any initial advice - if you have the cover, then if things need to go further then you have the reassurance that you don't have to pay for it.

Bowsandberries10 Fri 23-Oct-15 15:22:04

Thanks for the advice, think giving ACAS a call sounds like the best thing

jclm Tue 27-Oct-15 22:10:14

As others have said,call ACAS. BTW you are protected in employment law as you are a carer of a disabled person. This gives you many rights. X

Bowsandberries10 Tue 27-Oct-15 22:35:13

Thanks for the reply, I have until Monday to lodge an appeal letter so i will update next week...fingers crossed as I'm not very hopeful sad

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: