Too soon to ask for part time?(19 Posts)
I have been working full time since the beginning of October as a PA/Office Manager. It is a very small consultancy, my boss being the owner/Director. He is a micro managing boss, something that I'm not used to and the role is becoming more low level accounts rather than PA/Office Manager. The package is great and it is only a mile from my home so really convenient. However, I am just exhausted. I'm a single Mum to two children and am really struggling with full time. That in itself is tiring but his micro management is making me on edge and I am losing confidence. My predecessor did a 18hr week, I am currently doing 37.5hrs. I would really like to reduce my hours, for my own sanity and for the fact I feel guilty about working full time and I'm missing my children but also feel that I could do my job perfectly well in 22.5/30hrs (3/4 days). Is it too soon to request this?
As you now have 26 weeks service then you have a statutory right to make the request but I would put it in writing as well as asking.
Not sure how old your children are, but I would put in a request and make sure you have a strong business case outlining how you can do the job just as effectively in fewer hrs - clearly your predesseor did, though it wae readvertised at full time. Job share could be another suggestion in your application.
I doubt you'll be happier though
He'll still micromanage
I'd start looking for other part time jobs tbh
What happened to the business that made them advertise your job as FT when previous candidate did 18 hours? That's majorly different.
Thank you for your responses.
Oblomov - my predecessor worked for the company for 3 years initially for 25hrs a week then she requested a reduction to 18hrs to fit in with childcare. At my interview he said this wasn't working and it was a FT position. I don't really agree apart from maybe at year end when I can absolotely do the extra hours to get the work done. In 7 months we have taken on more clients and in the last month a new member of staff but I still don't agree this justifies FT?
You can always ask, it's sounds odd to me that such a small company would pay someone full time if it really is a part time role though so make sure you are thorough when demonstrating why the role is part time in your application.
It's hard to see why they'd agree for you to move to part time, when you were explicitly recruited to a full time role. If your role is office manager/ PA then presumably the boss wants someone there full time in case an issue comes up even if the workload isn't that high.
It's your right to ask. But as an employer I'd be pretty irritated if you did.
Knowing at interview it was a FT post and they specifically said they wanted a FT employee they may not be happy with a request as it goes against the business need and they were honest from the start.
At my interview he said this wasn't working and it was a FT position
Although you have the right to put in a request for flexible working, it doesn't mean your boss has to grant the request. If his intention is to have a Ft PA, arguing with him about how he chooses to run the business (even if you think you are right) could impair your relationship. Also if the business has grown or changed since your predecessor, and you are finding the volume of work is exhausting you, that is also a sign that he may be right to have someone FT.
You may not want to walk away from a good job that's only minutes away from home, but you'd be best looking at alternatives.
Or if you think he could be receptive, come clean and say you are finding it hard and can you work together to agree fewer hours that could work for you both, so he feels he has a say in what the flexible working looks like.
I know that I don't have a right to part time and that I can only request it. The volume of work has not increased in the last 8 months hence I think it can be done on a part time basis. I am not exhausted from that, it's because I feel guilty and am struggling to fit everything in around work. I thought I could handle it, but I can't.
It's awful feeling like the walls are closing in on you and that you aren't able to do justice to either work or home life.
Before submitting your request, could you record the time taken to adequately cover the required activities in your job description so you have objective evidence that you have slack time (and therefore you could cover your duties in fewer hours).
The risk you run is that he says he has additional jobs for you to do, to cover the hours that you aren't currently using.
Unfortunately some companies aren't geared up for PT, they see office hours as being 9-5 and are close-minded to other arrangements. Especially small companies with thinly spread resources.
Thank you Daisy that's a good idea. I'll put it into action next week. Thank you for your advice.
Would any other options work, such as working full time over 4 days, or taking shorter lunch break so you can leave early, or using annual leave to take every Monday off, or a half day every Friday etc? Or is there part of the job that could be done from home, even for an hour at the end of the day (daily reports or something?).
I was thinking of suggesting finishing at 3 on a Monday & Tuesday and 415 on a Wednesday, Thursday, Friday plus taking half an hour for lunch making my weekly hours 31.25 if he wanted me in every day. It just means I can collect from school each day plus get a bit more housework done?
At my interview he said this wasn't working and it was a FT position
Is this because of volume of work or because he wants a FT presence, so you are there if/when he needs you? Include in your application what the back up will be if you are not there.
There are some really good qualities of this job - not stressful, close to home, good package - that I'd be quite wary of rocking the boat. Do you mean you're actually sitting around doing nothing for an hour or two every day? Could you use some of that time to do chores eg online banking, meal planning?
If you reduced your hours you'd lose pay. If you stayed full time could you use that money to save you time eg cleaner? Sorry I know it's a cliché.
I understand your frustration but I'm not sure how you'd approach offering to do the same work for less hours and money. They must have made the job full time for a reason.
I wouldn't recommend the OP does home chores eg online banking, meal planning in work time on a work computer.
Quite agree. Otherwise the next post will be complaining about her boss letting her go!!!
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