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how open are you at an interview are you about children / flexible working hours

(12 Posts)
whatsfordinnerthen Thu 18-Aug-11 19:17:22

I am going for a part time job (10 hrs a week) that I would really like to fit around the children in school hours. I haven't done an interview since having children and obviously they are a big consideration in whether I can take the job or not.

I was wondering how much I should say about the children at the interview and whether I should ask how flexible they would be about working hours i.e. if I can change my days if the children are ill/have school assemblies etc. or if I can work all my hours in one day during the holidays to make childcare easier. I feel they should know about the children especially as I am overqualified for the job but I don't want to think I am being difficult or fussy.

This is a job where I think there is no reason why they can't be flexible.

Your thoughts would be appreciated

bananapirate Thu 18-Aug-11 19:20:18

I've had about 20 interviews recently and it's never even come up.
I think if you get the job, or through to the next stage.
Might be a bit different as I am going through recruitment agencies and it's kind of their job to ask those questions and negotiate

I would just ask what the hours are.

whatsfordinnerthen Thu 18-Aug-11 19:23:38

thanks - I guess actually it maybe jumping the gun a bit to discuss flexibility before I've been offered the job.

bananapirate Thu 18-Aug-11 20:38:56

i was worried about what to say if they asked how flexible I could be. But they aren't actually allowed to ask those kind of questions I don't think.

good luck!

Saffra Fri 19-Aug-11 17:12:13

I would wait until the next stage to ask those sort of questions TBH. They will be able to ask about how flexible you can be, i'd think, but not ask if you can be flexible due to childcare arrangements.

LaCiccolina Fri 19-Aug-11 19:01:20

Ask away but I wouldn't then ask for feedback after as to why you didn't get the job unless you like to be told the other person was better qualified etc...

Strix Fri 19-Aug-11 19:44:25

I say I have children, I have live-in childcare, I am available when you need me, and I am not seeking flexible / part-time work.

LCarbury Fri 19-Aug-11 21:07:50

I don't say anything as I think it puts the interviewer in an awkward position

ApuskiDusky Fri 19-Aug-11 21:14:48

Is there any way you can speak to someone you know already works there? I think it's OK to ask about hours in an interview, but there's no way they'll be able to answer the questions you have listed satisfactorily in an interview - they will only say 'it depends' or at best 'we try to be flexible when we can'. What matters is what happens in practice, and for that you need someone who already works there.

Vintagepommery Sat 20-Aug-11 11:10:42

I suppose the question is - is it a deal breaker? Will you be able to do the job if it isn't flexible? i would probably ask at the stage if you get offered the job. Usually you get some sense of how flexible the employers are during the interview.

whatsfordinnerthen Sat 20-Aug-11 18:50:08

Thanks for your replies.

I guess flexibility is a deal breaker because if they want me to go in really early or after school it is going to make doing this job a lot more complicated and cost me more in childcare. Also I need to think about options for childcare in the school holidays.

I am going to ask what hours they had in mind at the interview but not take it any further until offered the job.

GoInky Fri 26-Aug-11 20:58:01

I recommend asking what hours the job requires, and to what extend there are emergency-situations and whether the tasks require you to take work home, or stay longer occasionally. Employers usually like to know whether you can do the job, and if the job will get done properly. I personally don't think children and childcare requirements are very appropriate to discuss at an interview, as it should be about the job, and whether you can do the job. It would be good if you got a sense what kind of flexibility the job requires, just by discussing the type of work you will be doing. Then you can make a judgment, whether you feel you can do the job properly (even though you might need to go home early some days etc.). A good choice not to bring it up too early. How did it go? Did you get the offer?

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