Returning to work AIBU to ask for 2 days working from home - tips and new job experience?

(10 Posts)
Juniper33 Sun 21-Jan-18 12:35:41

Hi there

I'm new here so pls be gentle!

I am in my 6th month of a years maternity leave. I work as an executive assistant to 2 executive directors for a very large organisation.

Before I went on maternity leave I fully intended to go back full time in the office in Birmingham, and do regular keeping in touch days, but I have not felt the urge to do either! Which may sound terrible but it's the kind of job that requires 7 days a week commitment (because of nature of work never really switch off!) and when I think about it the last 5 years working has been exhausting! Different exhausting from looking after a baby who doesn't like to nap or sleep long stretches!

Ds is 5 months and we have no routine and I just want to enjoy him growing up, the job is super stressful and requires a lot of travel to head office in Edinburgh and also sites in Dorset and Southend so it's full on! Long hours and demanding of my mind and attention.

Financially we can cope if I worked 2 days from home (I was a satellite worker in an office on my own -as it's a national organisation most meetings are via Skype or phone) as my commute is an hour each way to sit in an office on my own, my previous team leader was enthusiastic about home working and running up to maternity leave I
almost exclusively worked from home. But that team leader left 4 months ago and I have not heard anything from the new one - no introduction and didn't hear anything from the team over Christmas - so feeling a bit isolated! ( I did send cards but didn't hear anything back!)

Now I want to request 2 days working from home, I am nervous over whether it will be accepted as the executive directors require 5 days a week support. I know that job shares are not popular in my organisation and I have never heard of anyone doing their role that way.

I believe there are other tasks I could do, which relate to the role, but that would mean the maternity cover staying on (if he likes it!) and me being available additionally to fulfil other tasks.

Just wanted to see if anyone else has had a similar experience of a role which couldn't be split and any success in negotiation their terms.

And I guess if they do say no, how easy is it to get a new job as a new Mum!
I welcome any tips, thank you for reading smile

OP’s posts: |
LIZS Sun 21-Jan-18 12:39:18

Will your ds be in childcare for those 2 days? You cannot expect to skype or be taken seriously if he is at home and your attention divided.

WipsGlitter Sun 21-Jan-18 12:42:50

Agree you'll still need childcare for those days. I'd arrange a KIT day to get a feel for the new manager etc.

greendale17 Sun 21-Jan-18 12:47:20

From what you have described about your job OP I still it’s very slim that you would be able to work from home

Juniper33 Sun 21-Jan-18 12:53:36

Sorry I should have said! Yes, I am keen for him to go to nursery for the 2 days so I would be 100% focused. I was thinking, if they accept,I would have him go 2 weeks before I returned so we could settle in to it! As, in honesty, I am completely dreading being apart from him - but know it will be good for us both!

OP’s posts: |
Temporaryanonymity Sun 21-Jan-18 13:03:52

It doesn't really matter whether anyone can post and say that they've successfully negotiated it, as they probably don't work in your role or organisation.

What will help your application is to work through a business case that sets out what you will do and how, and how it will benefit the business. Don't make it about how it will better for you and the baby. I'm a big fan of homeworking and find that I am more productive. I'm definitely not more productive when the kids are around, and they are fairly independent now.

You say your role requires travel etc. Are you suggesting that you don't do that anymore? Are you proposing a reduction in hours too? remember you need to present a case that makes it sound like a really sound business case that will increase productivity.

Metalhead Mon 22-Jan-18 10:23:14

You say you already worked from home or remotely from the rest of the team before your ML, or did I get that wrong? In which case I can’t see how they could refuse to let you do the same again, as long as it worked well before you’ve surely got a very strong case for it. Good luck!

PramWanker Wed 24-Jan-18 15:15:31

Yes, having done it before might potentially mean you could argue it became part of your terms and conditions- depends what contract says too of course. And as you have a previous record of homeworking, if eg you were more productive you could use that as part of your case. I'd also mention any potential savings to the business such as less need for space.

LadyLapsang Thu 25-Jan-18 19:57:30

So are you proposing to change from five days pw full-time, office based in Birmingham but travel the various other sites as needed to working part-time, two days pw exclusively from home? And you want them to keep your full-time MAT leave cover on. What's in it for them, apart from an inflated wage bill?

juniper33 Sun 29-Jul-18 18:54:54

Just to update that this was successful, thank you for all the tips. At times I thought I'd made a mistake by asking, but after waiting for what felt like forever it was accepted and I return this month!

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