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Flexible working - changing after 3 months?

(2 Posts)
teejayem Thu 04-Feb-16 11:51:37

I work for a large american corporate and have requested flexible working to 3 days to fit around my little boy. Truth be told I don't really want to go back but we need the money. DS is only 8 months and will be looked after by family, who are about a 25 min journey away. I'm not going down the childcare route as yet, because it would involve childminder plus nursery and nursery fees here are extortionate. I also don't want to be away from my baby for 12-13 hours at a time!
Anyway, I had a conversation with my Line manager yesterday who has said in principle 3 days is fine, which is brilliant. However she then went on to say that after 3 months 'the business' (Her) would expect me to increase to 4 days.
I don't want to work 4 days. It won't work for us in terms of work life balance (DH works away most of the week and often weekends) and childcare would be really hard to manage. Not to mention DS doesn't sleep. I appreciate that the needs of the business etc come first, and not my childcare woes etc (I work in HR believe it or not) BUT I've seen this happen to a colleague and she was basically bullied into going back for more hours than she could manage and ended up leaving. I've got to submit my Flex request in writing this week and I want to be clear that although I am happy to review the arrangement in June, at this point I don't feel it's appropriate to agree an increase in hours before I've even gone back.
Does this sound fair? I know organisations can offer a flex working trail period so I suspect this is what the three months bit is about. I just don't want to suck it up and then spend then next three months worrying about it. Part of me wonders if I should just agree and try and find something PT elsewhere in the meantime(And like many Mum City workers, I have been looking since mid last year and it seems these opportunities are as rare as unicorn eggs).
Guess my question is, can they force me to increase my hours after the three months is up? and if I refuse, can they revoke the agreement?

OzzieFem Thu 04-Feb-16 13:16:40

If you have made and signed an agreement to increase your days from 3 to 4 per week after a period of 3 months, then legally you would be bound by it.

I think your idea of an agreement to review the situation after 3 months would be the better way to go, as you have not committed yourself.

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