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Please can someone help me put fill-in my flexible working form, I've got an interview with my boss tomorrow to return to my job after maternity leave HELP

(13 Posts)
jellyjem Thu 18-Sep-08 16:41:41

Really hope someone can help me, I'm stuck as what to put.

I work in an office and my current hours are 9:00am-5:30pm 5 days per week. I want to change my hours to 9:30am-4:30pm 3 days a week.

My firm have sent me a form to fill in and the heading says "describe the impact of the new working pattern and how any problmes can be overcome". I think my boss is going to hate the idea of me working part time mostly because it means no-one will be there to answer the phones (he likes me to cover for him so he can sneek home early!!). I just can't think how to put a positive slant on the idea and I'm really starting to panick. My interviews been set up for tomorrow afternoon. Help, help help I just don't know where to start

Flier Thu 18-Sep-08 16:46:03

The new working pattern will allow me to be be able to have some quality time with my child whilst allowing me to also keep working.

I feel that the only impact will be on my boss who likes to go home early grin

seriously, what is your job and what do you think will be the impact on your company if you are able to change to these hours? will they need to emplay someone else, or are there others who can do the hours you can't, or is job share possible? Think of it from your companys point of view, thats all they'll be thinking about.

jellyjem Thu 18-Sep-08 17:14:32

grin, thanks Flier, really struggling with this.

I'm a secretary and work for a large company but mainly just for one person (who is very difficult and stuck in his ways!). The other guy I used to work for has just handed in his notice and the firm have made a few redundancies and have said there could possibly be more so I'm hoping I could sell my reduced hours to them as a cost saving thing. I'm mainly admin based, answering phones, filing some urgent stuff like reports and things. To be honest its never been that busy and I'm sure I could fit it all in in three days instead of five but my boss likes to pretend to the director that he's very busy and I know he's going to be the sticking point.

I've managed to put this together (some of it is copied from another post) but I think it needs some major tweeking.

"The suggested new working pattern could potentially create problems when reports, letters etc are urgent but if my workload could be reviewed at the beginning of each working week I would then be able to plan the work in advance of my non-working days.

If …………. could accommodate me changing to part time hours this would save costs which will reduce staffing budgets.

I do have a certain amount of flexibility over which days I do work as my mother will be looking after Jessica during my working day. I will need the days to be fixed the majority of the time but if I knew in advance, say at the beginning of the week, I could possibly change my working days around to help if there was a particularly busy period and you needed me to be there say on a Friday instead of a Thursday.

A reduced working week will enable me to be fully focused on work when I am there. People who are working hours that suit the rest of their life, are more likely to stay fresh, energetic and less stressed during the hours they do work."

I'm terrified they're going to turn me down. Really appreciate your help.


Flier Thu 18-Sep-08 17:22:38

I think the flexibility you can offer is a huge plus point, and I think what you've suggested above is fine. You are just terrified because you know what your boss is like. So, were you the secretary for the 2 men? Will the one who resigned be replaced? if he's not being replaced then your workload will surely be reduced?

jellyjem Thu 18-Sep-08 17:29:03

Yeah I used to work for both of them but the majority of my work load is from the guy who will still be there. I'm not sure whether or not they will replace the other guy but I recently received a memo sent to everyone in the firm saying they would only replace essential members of staff due to the market at the moment.

So you think thats okay? Not gonna be able to sleep at all now tonight, dreading tomorrow. Don't even know what I'm going to wear, my old work clothes don't fit me any more sad

Flier Thu 18-Sep-08 17:31:47

I think its fine, what else can you say, really. They will already have their ideas on how and if it will work.

Good Luck, will you post and say how it went?

jellyjem Thu 18-Sep-08 22:06:57

Thanks Flier, I'll post and let you know how I got on, keep your fingers crossed for me tomorrow afternoon.


Flier Sat 20-Sep-08 09:20:11

how did it go jellyjem?

jellyjem Wed 24-Sep-08 20:04:07

Hi Flier - it was terrible, a complete waste of time.

My chat (interview) was with the director and staight away he refused to even listen to my points and wouldn't consider me going back part time, he just kept insisting it was a full time position. He didn't even look at the form I agonised over until I pointedly asked him read it (sigh).

He did say in the end he'd try and find a way for me to job share but at the same time he refused to advertise the job as he said it "would be a waste of time as no-one would want to work only 20 hours a week" shock. I said I was sure lots of other Mums would be qualified for the position and would love to work those hours and he basically just blanked me. I'm 100% sure he's not even going to try.

As I said the company has made a few people redundant recently and I'm wondering now if they think they can just make get me out to save on the redundancy pay.

He said he'd let me know their decission soon but I'm sure its going to be a no. I'm not sure on my rights so need to do some investigation but I'm definatly not going to just give up. I don't even particularly want the job now and have started looking for something else but at the same time I don't see why they should just get away with treating me like this.

MrsWobble Wed 24-Sep-08 21:22:12

Hi - can I give you my point of view (as an employer). My secretary came back from maternity leave on a part time basis and job shares with another maternity returner and it works well for us although if I'm honest I would prefer one full time person.

Reading your original post, the difficulty for me would be the shorter days - given that providing phone cover is important I would find that very difficult whereas the 3 days would be fine because you can get cover. Is there any scope for you to keep the standard length day?

Given that your workload has reduced with one of your bosses leaving is there any scope for you to find your own job share partner within the company? If you could arrange to do 3 days and organise a handover routine such that your boss has full cover for the week then that might work.

I realise that this might all be totally impractical but it is what has worked for me.

BetsyBoop Wed 24-Sep-08 21:22:39

there is a statutory process they have to follow.

If they refuse they HAVE to give you a valid business reason as to why & you have the right of appeal (and can then explain how this business reason could be overcome) They can't just say "no"

There are time limits for each stage of the process, covered in the link above.

jellyjem Wed 24-Sep-08 22:31:23

Thanks, the link is great, I've saved a copy to my favourites.

Betsy, thanks for your perspective. The shortened hours requested are just my ideal hours and my director knows that, the main thing is the days, I just can't do five days a week 9am-5:30pm anymore, I'd only see my little girl weekends if I did that and I've waited too long to be a Mum to miss it all now.

I'm sure my director just thinks he can do what he likes!!!!! I've had another realisation too tonight, my firm kept back a percentage of my maternity pay. I'm only entitled to it in the form of a bonus three months after I return to work, so if they make it difficult for me to go back they make a saving there too.

I'll have to wait for their letter to arrive and take it from there. Thanks for your help, I hope you can help me again if (when) I appeal their decision.


Flier Thu 25-Sep-08 07:53:10

sorry to hear this jellyjem, and thats a great link you've been given. good luck with it all

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