Model policy: Right to make a request in relation to study or training

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Paragraphs in square brackets are optional.

Policy wording

The Company is fully committed to staff training and development, recognising that affording employees the opportunity to undertake study or training will benefit both the employee and the Company. Encouraging employees to improve their knowledge and skills through study or training and creating an environment in which employees are encouraged to learn and develop has many positive benefits, not least of which is that the performance and productivity of the Company is likely to be enhanced, thus benefiting everyone who works within it.

The law grants employees who have a minimum of 26 weeks’ continuous service the right to request make a request in relation to study or training and to have their request considered by their employer.

[Notwithstanding this, it is the Company’s policy to consider requests in relation to study or training from all employees, ie not only those who are eligible under the law to submit such requests. However, precedence will be given to employees who are eligible under the law to submit such a request, to ensure that the Company is complying with its legal obligations.]

Employees may submit a request to undertake any type of study or training, provided that they can reasonably demonstrate that the study or training is likely to lead to an improvement in their effectiveness at work, and consequently an improvement in the performance of the business.

Requests can be made either in relation to an accredited programme leading to the award of a recognised qualification, or in relation to unaccredited training that will help the employee to develop specific skills relevant to his/her job. The proposed training can be conducted in any location and at any time, and can be supervised or unsupervised.

However, it must be relevant to the employee’s employment within the Company.

Where a valid request has been submitted, the employee’s manager will arrange a meeting with him/her to discuss the request as soon as practicable. The meeting will normally take place no later than 28 days after the date on which the request was submitted. The purpose of the meeting will be to discuss the request, its appropriateness to the employee’s job and the needs of the business and any possible alternative arrangements that might meet the employee’s training needs. A decision will be given to the employee in writing within 14 days of the meeting.

If an employee’s request in relation to study or training is refused, the employee will have the right to appeal against this decision to a more senior manager who was not involved in the decision to refuse the request. Any appeal should be submitted within 14 days of the decision to refuse the request. The appeal notice must be in writing and must include the grounds on which the employee wishes to base the appeal.

The Company is not obliged by law to pay an employee for any time off granted for study or training under the right to make a request in relation to study or training. Therefore, any time off agreed will be unpaid.

[However, the Company may, at its discretion, agree to pay the employee his/her normal wage/salary during some or all of any time off granted for study or training purposes.]

[The Company will also consider, in appropriate cases, whether or not it is willing to pay for the training requested by the employee.]

The Company will endeavour, wherever possible, to accommodate an employee’s request in relation to study or training, provided that the needs of the business are not likely to be adversely affected if the request is granted.

Each request will be dealt with individually, taking into account the nature of the employee’s request and any likely effects of granting it, eg any effects on the employee’s work or on the employee’s colleagues. Agreeing to one employee’s request will not set a precedent or create a right for other employees to have their requests in relation to study or training granted.

Although the Company encourages employees to undertake courses of study or training that are relevant to their employment, it will not always be possible to grant requests in relation to study or training. The circumstances in which the Company may have to refuse a request include where:

  • the proposed study or training would not improve the employee’s effectiveness at work, or the performance of the business itself;
  • the cost to the business of granting time off for training would be too great;
  • granting the employee’s request would have a detrimental effect on the organisation’s ability to meet customer demand;
  • the employer would be unable satisfactorily to cover the employee’s absences on training;
  • there would be a detrimental impact on quality or performance; or
  • there are planned structural changes in the Company.

Employees who wish to submit a request in relation to study or training should do so in writing (email is acceptable). Requests may not be submitted more than once every 12 months.

Information on how to make a request, and a standard form for making the request, is available from [ ] [or on the Company’s intranet].

 


Related letters on XpertHR

The following letter templates are available to XpertHR subscribers, further assisting your approach on this issue.

  • Letter explaining the make a request in relation to study or training
  • Letter responding to an employee’s request in relation to study or training
  • Letter agreeing to an employee’s request in relation to study or training
  • Letter refusing an employee’s request in relation to study or training
  • Letter asking an employee to resubmit an invalid request in relation to study or training
  • Letter rearranging a meeting to discuss an employee’s request in relation to study or training
  • Letter informing an employee that his or her request in relation to study or training is considered as withdrawn because of a failure to attend a meeting more than once
  • Letter informing employee of ineligibility to make a request in relation to study or training
  • Letter responding to an employee who has appealed against a refusal to grant a request in relation to study or training
  • Letter rejecting an employee’s appeal against the employer’s refusal to grant a request in relation to study or training
  • Letter upholding an employee’s appeal against the employer’s refusal to grant a request in relation to study or training
  • Letter rearranging a meeting to discuss an employee’s appeal against the refusal to grant his or her request in relation to study or training
  • Letter informing an employee that his or her request in relation to study or training is considered as withdrawn because of a failure to attend an appeal meeting more than once.


Future developments

The right to make a request in relation to study or training is to be extended to all employers (regardless of size) from 6 April 2011.

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