Part 6: Post-lockdown flexible working – when childcare goes bad
By David Whincup on 21 October 2020

Time to answer another interesting question which came up at our Managing Working Parents webinar a couple of weeks ago:

Where the employee is unable to come into work for childcare reasons, what are my duties to provide him with work suitable to be done from home? 

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Part 5: Post-lockdown flexible working – handling requests sooner or later
By David Whincup on 13 October 2020

Here is another question which came up more than once at last week’s webinar on Managing Working Parents but which I was unable to get to at the time.

If you receive a flexible working application now, can you “park” it until things settle down and you have a clearer picture of what your post-pandemic needs for office-based staff will actually be?

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Part 4: Post-lockdown flexible working – webinar follow-up
By David Whincup on 9 October 2020

Our thanks to the 100-plus attendees on our “Managing Working Parents” webinar yesterday.  As anticipated, we didn’t get to all the questions on this currently even more than usually vexed topic which were submitted through the chat box facility thingy, so as promised, here are some further answers (more to follow soon):

  • If you have done a trial period, should you always give the reason why it ended?
  • Does working from home include working from your home country if you are not from the UK?

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Part 3: Post-lockdown flexible working — the big questions
By David Whincup on 12 June 2020

If we are right to think that the unravelling of lockdown will be accompanied by a sharp increase in the number of employees requesting to work from home, then many employers will shortly start to face some serious posers in relation to the flexible working scheme. These are not new questions, but will be thrown into starker prominence by the sheer number of requests you may have to deal with at the same time. Of course you should grant them where you can, but what if you are unsure?

  • Does granting one home working request set a precedent for others?
  • I have two live flexible working applications which are inter-dependent – I can grant one but not both.  Which do I go with?
  • Should I ask why each employee wants to work from home?

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Part 2: Post-lockdown flexible working – making it official
By David Whincup on 11 June 2020

By now, many employees working from home in the lockdown will have made quite firm decisions around how they wish to operate going forward. Some will have decided that there is nothing in their lives quite like their family and, for that reason, that they wish to extend their WFH indefinitely. Others, on probably very similar grounds, will want to get back to the office as a matter of some urgency.

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Part 1: Post-lockdown flexible working – can you still say no?
By David Regan on 10 June 2020

The world of work has remained broadly the same for the last 100 to 200 years – offices might have lost the wood panelling, trains become less smoky (inside and out!), top hats turned into bowler hats then no hats, beards have gone in, out, then back into fashion,  but the central tenet remains – I pay you money, I expect you to turn up to work and do your job. This holds true even for those industries that loudly trumpet their ‘disruptive’ ways ” –  you only have to visit the newest glass palaces that stand for many modern offices to see the nattily dressed employees largely ignoring the free foosball, PlayStation, beanbags in the break-out rooms, etc., and glued to their desks in rows, just like the same battery chickens of a century ago. The more you fill the office with free fruit and things that look like play and relaxation, the more you are actually giving your staff the least possible reason to leave the building.

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