CIPD calls for all staff to be allowed to work flexible hours

The
CIPD is calling for all employees to have the right to request flexible
working.

From
April this year parents will be able to request the right to flexibility, under
the Employment Rights Act.

Companies
have to seriously consider the request and can only refuse if they can
demonstrate that the move would have a detrimental effect on their business.

Mike
Emmott, CIPD Employee Relations Adviser, said: "The new law should not
present serious problems to employers. It is a declaration of good practice and
common sense.

"However,
we would have liked to see the right extended to all employees – not just those
with young children. We would urge organisations to go beyond compliance with
the law, and to respond positively wherever possible to employees’ requests for
flexible working. There are likely to be significant business benefits if they
do, including better recruitment and retention of staff.

"A
rigid nine-to-five, five days a week set up is based on working patterns which
have their roots in the 1950s and 60s, when most families had a male
breadwinner and a full-time mother at home.

"For
many families, more flexible arrangements are essential. Today’s employees are
demanding the opportunity to achieve a better balance between work and the rest
of their life, and successful organisations are responding to this. "

By Paul Nelson

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