Millions of workers will have the right to demand working from home on day one of their new employment under new legislation set up by ministers.
At present, workers can demand to work from home only after six months in a new job
The Government intends to allow for more flexible working, including job-sharing, flexi-time and staggered hours to enhance the work-life balance.
It will be considered as a benefit for employees who have household obligations such as caring for their children or elderly relatives.
At present, workers can demand to work from home only after six months in a new employment
Small companies minister Kevin Hollinrake (pictured) said last night: ‘Giving people greater influence over their working pattern makes for happier employees and more productive firms’
But opponents last night argued it might be a blow for smaller companies and keep on depriving city centres of commuter footfall which hasn’t entirely returned since the Covid-19 crisis.
At now, workers may only demand to work from home after six months in a new position.
Small businesses minister Kevin Hollinrake (pictured) said last night: ‘Giving staff more say over their working pattern makes for happier employees and more productive businesses’
The proposed legislation would push this forward to the first day.
Small companies minister Kevin Hollinrake last night said: ‘Giving people greater influence over their working pattern leads for happier employees and more productive firms. Put simply, it’s a no-brainer.
‘Greater flexibility over where, when, and how people work is a vital element of our goal to make the UK the finest place in the world to work.’
But former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith claimed there was ‘no evidence’ for what Mr Hollinrake was suggesting.
Former Tory leader Sir Iain Duncan Smith (pictured) said: ‘What you wind up with if you’re not cautious is small firms finding it impossible to get certain services done because individuals just say “I’m headed off home”
Former Tory leader Sir Iain Duncan Smith (pictured) said: ‘What you end up with if you’re not careful is small businesses finding it difficult to get certain jobs done because people just say “I’m heading off home”
He said: ‘For small firms there are serious challenges here. They’re anxious about this type of stuff, because what you wind up with if you’re not cautious is small company finding it impossible to get certain services done because people just say “I’m headed off home”.
The government must make it clear that there is a means for small firms to deal with this.
If you’re a large global corporation with thousands upon thousands of employees, it’s not an issue.
In addition, campaigners are asking that flexible working be listed in employment advertisements and granted the legal right, as opposed to only being requested.
Frances O’Grady, the head of the Trades Union Congress, stated, “Flexible working should be available to everyone.”
It’s how we retain mothers in the workforce, reduce the gender wage gap, and offer fathers more time with their children. It’s also how we keep handicapped employees, older workers, and caregivers employed.
Allowing employees to request flexible work from their first day on the job would be a tiny step in the right way, but we’d like the government to go far further to make flexible work the norm.