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arrangements for getting paid for working after end of contract

(6 Posts)
MamaChris Thu 02-Oct-08 19:51:47

My current 3 year (FT) contract has just ended, and I don't start a new job till January. I today received a request to continue to do some work for another few months (until May), unpaid (I've done a lot of unpaid work during recent maternity leave). I'm inclined to do the work, but ask for payment. But I'm not sure what the best arrangement would be. I can think of 2 options:

1. ask them to extend the contract for 3 months, but ask under family friendly working to go part time, and work from home (very feasible in my job). We'd then have to negotiate how many hours/week, but I would be working for free from January-May when my new job starts.

2. ask them to employ me on a consultancy basis, and bill them per hour worked. This is uncommon in my area of work, and there could be difficulties if the number of hours was not agreed in advance. However, I would be paid from January-May if I could make the arrangement work.

I favour #1, but can anyone think of something better that would allow me to be paid after January?

flowerybeanbag Thu 02-Oct-08 20:34:07

I'm not really following mamachris sorry.

You have ended a 3 year contract. You start a new job in January. Is the new job with the same employer or a new employer? Is the new job paid or unpaid? I'm a bit confused I'm afraid.

I've ummed and erred about whether to ask you why on earth you are doing so much unpaid work for an organisation that is able to employ you on a paid basis. I'm assuming (hoping) that it's a charity you work for. I've got lots of experience working for some very 'worthy' charities but although I often worked over and above hours/requirements, I would not have carried out unpaid work for them. I have also done some pro bono advisory work for different charities. I do think blurring the lines between voluntary and paid work isn't the best idea.

My feelings about paid/unpaid issues aside, it's difficult to advise without understanding a bit more clearly what the situation is so if you are able to clarify a bit that would be helpful.

MamaChris Thu 02-Oct-08 20:47:03

Sorry for confusion - I was trying to be brief.

I work in academia (an endless round of short term research contracts). The 3 year contract which just ended is with one university where I have worked for 5 years (2 contracts). The new job (2 year contract) is paid, with a new university.

Because projects never really start and finish at the same time as grants, it is common to continue to work on old projects when you move to new contracts, though normally these are at the same university so no one bothers which contract they're on. Projects also lead to papers, and it is these that count on a CV, and authorship on a paper depends to a greater extent on your involvement at the end of a project than the beginning. My employers didn't get cover for my maternity leave, and not wanting to see 4 years of my work just hang, I kept working on it from home.

They hopefully have someone to replace me who can start next May, but until then there will be bits of work to be done - projects in which I have been involved since conception that will be coming to a head. I would therefore be interested to help finish these up, but want to get paid for it.

Does that help at all?

flowerybeanbag Thu 02-Oct-08 22:00:59

That's helpful to understand a bit more about the circumstances yes.

Option 1, extending your contract. Don't understand why this means you'd be working for free between Jan and May? Are you not able to be employed by two universities simultaneously or something? Why would being employed rather than self-employed mean you don't get paid? Other than that it sounds like the easiest and most straightforward option.

Option 2, consultancy. If it's uncommon it probably depends on whether they'd go for it or not, and if the potential difficult might be hours not being agreed beforehand, then obviously that would be important to do. If you don't already do consultancy yourself you'll have to register as self-employed with HMRC and all that palaver, so if just extending your existing contract is a possibility, that's probably easier.

MamaChris Fri 03-Oct-08 08:29:32

Thanks. Hadn't even thought I could work for two universities simultaneously! Is that really possible, even if the other job is full time? I think that is the most straightforward. I just need to work up the argument so it's watertight. (Universities are used to getting free work from people, so I need to construct a sound argument).

flowerybeanbag Fri 03-Oct-08 09:03:48

Depends on your contract with the f/t job, the terms and conditions may say something about alternative employment, either you're not allowed, or it must be agreed or it musn't conflict with your f/t job. So you may need to check with your new job that they're happy for you to do that, but in principle you can certainly be employed by more than one organisation.

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