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AIBU?

To turn down a job because they refused flexible working even though it was higher paid.

215 replies

SummerFlops · 14/09/2022 18:37

I have been offered a job which is more money. Not massively loads. It's in my home town so no travel costs. So taking into account that and the slightly higher pay, I would be better off by £190 per month.

I asked if I could work flexibly in the mornings and afternoons to do a school run for one academic year so till July 2023. I would make the time up by working earlier from home and later in the evening. School run takes 20 mins max there and back so 40 mins of the day total.

The reason why I asked was so that I could help out my partner who has to do 2 school runs at different schools so pretty hectic. No after school club possible. This is just for this academic year and then she will be fine as eldest will be in secondary and can make own way.

The manager refused saying that that isn't what they do and there's an expectation that everyone needs to be in the office and available at any time if anything comes up. Like what i have no idea - I am not an ER doctor or anything. She also insinuated that I wasn't committed to the job by asking this.

Looks like they don't have a flexible working culture and I feel like turning the offer down but at the same time the extra money would be nice too!

YABU - of course they don't have to accept your request and you're being silly for expecting it.

YANBU - they don't seem like a forward thinking organisation and they'll be other stuff stuck in the dark ages. Run for the hills.

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

1142 votes. Final results.

POLL
You are being unreasonable
35%
You are NOT being unreasonable
65%
RicStar · 14/09/2022 18:45

Its fair enough you asked, although I am slightly confused by where your home/ office / school are and when you were planning to work from the office and when from home, hard to judge how reasonable they were without knowing the team / responsibilities of the role, but they certainly don't have to be flexible at this stage.

Windowtea · 14/09/2022 18:45

They don't need to accept it, but you don't need to accept the job either.

I don't think many companies would let you do what you're asking TBH. My employer is flexible and we WFH. But I doubt even they would allow what you've asked for if you were full time.

SalesMum · 14/09/2022 18:48

YANBU to ask for it bit they are also not unseasonable to decline

Legally you need to be employed 6 continuous months for a flex work to be considered by a company

If it doesn't suit your needs then no harm asking and no harm in them declining just need to decide what's best for you

SummerFlops · 14/09/2022 18:48

Really? That's interesting. I would be in the office all the time but would leave to do the school run. It literally would be a 20min trip. Obviously if there were meetings etc that would take priority. I'm surprised that organisations aren't more open to flexibility after the pandemic.

OP posts:
tickticksnooze · 14/09/2022 18:49

She also insinuated that I wasn't committed to the job by asking this.

I would take that as a warning on their culture and decline.

newbienel · 14/09/2022 18:49

YANBU - I think they're being unreasonable in this modern day and age. Companies need to start trusting their workers, and realizing that work can be done flexibly when it suits the employee - as long as you're getting the job done and you're doing a good job, they shouldn't care. It's companies like this which make it difficult for women to have families. It's a disgrace if you ask me.
I would definitely not be accepting this job if I was you.

luxxlisbon · 14/09/2022 18:49

I agree I’ve never heard of something like that for flexible working. How would you leave the office, pick up your child from school and get back to work in 20 mins? Even a 10 minute walk the whole journey would be longer.

weddingDecliner · 14/09/2022 18:50

SummerFlops · 14/09/2022 18:48

Really? That's interesting. I would be in the office all the time but would leave to do the school run. It literally would be a 20min trip. Obviously if there were meetings etc that would take priority. I'm surprised that organisations aren't more open to flexibility after the pandemic.

Which could take out 2 possible hours of meeting time from everyone else

VladmirsPoutine · 14/09/2022 18:50

I don't think you were unreasonable to ask but again they weren't unreasonable to respond with a no. Having said that, I had hoped flexible working would have become common place post lockdown but alas.

SummerFlops · 14/09/2022 18:50

tickticksnooze · 14/09/2022 18:49

She also insinuated that I wasn't committed to the job by asking this.

I would take that as a warning on their culture and decline.

I think that's the thing that really put a foul taste in my mouth. I get that they can refuse but to say it shows I'm not committed was a bit wtf?

OP posts:
Quveas · 14/09/2022 18:50

There is no unreasonable about it. You had a right to ask. They had a right to say no.

SummerFlops · 14/09/2022 18:51

weddingDecliner · 14/09/2022 18:50

Which could take out 2 possible hours of meeting time from everyone else

If meetings were during the school run time then I wouldn't do the school run. This was literally just till July.

OP posts:
SummerFlops · 14/09/2022 18:52

VladmirsPoutine · 14/09/2022 18:50

I don't think you were unreasonable to ask but again they weren't unreasonable to respond with a no. Having said that, I had hoped flexible working would have become common place post lockdown but alas.

Me too. It really puts me off companies that are still so stuck in the dark ages.

OP posts:
BryceQuinlan · 14/09/2022 18:53

I'd take it as a note on the culture too. I've worked in places like this where it extends to their behaviour should you ever dare to fall pregnant. Wouldn't bother for an extra 200.

Coldilox · 14/09/2022 18:53

If your eldest is year 6 why can’t they make their own way to and from school, if it’s just a short walk?

SummerFlops · 14/09/2022 18:54

Coldilox · 14/09/2022 18:53

If your eldest is year 6 why can’t they make their own way to and from school, if it’s just a short walk?

It's not a short walk. We need to drop him off.

OP posts:
Captinplanit · 14/09/2022 18:57

My work can be like this (I had to really push for good flex in my role but I’m not the norm) and we are going to struggle to recruit good candidates now. People expect some flexibility. I think, as long as you’re doing your job and attending meetings when needed then there really isn’t an issue.

The amount of time people in my office spend chatting/coffee/long lunches (doing wordle ffs) but because they’re visible then it’s fine.

Hugasauras · 14/09/2022 18:57

YANBU to not take a job for any reason if it doesn't suit you.

We do school/nursery run in work hours (both of us WFH so just whichever of us is most able) but we aren't micromanaged and don't have meetings generally outside of scheduled times which are not at that time of day. Our work is really flexible so people often pop away to pick up kids from places. We have work that needs to be complete by a deadline every night so as long as that is done, no one really cares where anyone is at a specific moment in time. It's great Smile I wouldn't work somewhere without flexibility now.

Thatiswild · 14/09/2022 18:57

I’m still a bit confused, so what you have asked is if you can start late (because of morning school run) then leave work for 20 minutes at say 3pm every day? Office based?

I can see why they said no but I also think how they said it and the way they haven’t even considered it is perhaps indicative of the culture which may not suit you.

bootseason · 14/09/2022 18:59

Bad sign of the culture of the firm I wouldn't take it. A firm that really supports flexibility and a work life balance is worth a lot. I've been down this road, the fact you were made to feel bad for asking, that they didn't say how about you do one part of the day and not the other etc...shows they don't trust their staff.

willithappen · 14/09/2022 18:59

Weigh up what means more to you - the time with kids and helping doing the drop off/being part of that or the extra £190 a month.

Hankunamatata · 14/09/2022 19:03

Assuming your office based I think most managers with new full time employee would raise eyebrows at wanting a late start every morning and leaving office at say 2.30 every day

TheDoorIsOpen · 14/09/2022 19:05

I'm an employer and I don't think your request is unreasonable at all, though for us, flexibility works both ways. So for example, if you want to take an afternoon off for a root canal, I won't ask you to take it as holiday if you don't mind me occasionally texting you on a Saturday morning to do a quick work thing.

Simple flexibility works for us but it has to be on both sides.

The implication that you might not be 'committed' because you have a life outside of work, doesn't sound like a great culture! I don't think that's worth £190 extra a month.

PollyPeePants · 14/09/2022 19:18

I think you went in with too big an ask. Maybe you could just have said something like can I start 15 mins (or whatever) late to do the drop off and then take it off your lunch?
Asking to do both drop off and pick up probably a bit much without being part time.

cobblerwobbler · 14/09/2022 19:18

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