As of 30th June, all employers will have a legal obligation to evaluate flexible working requests made by all employees.
This is the case, as long as they have had 26 weeks’ service and have not made a request in the previous 12 months, even if that request was withdrawn.
Employers need the means to deal with all requests properly and professionally, and provide a valid reason if the request cannot be accommodated.
A flexible working request means a request to do any or all of the following:
- Reduce or vary your working hours
- Reduce or vary the days you work
- Work from a different location (eg. from home)
To coincide with this change in legislation, we have created new and fully compliant HR Case Management functionality, provided as standard within the core Youmanage system. This allows our clients the ability to create, monitor and proactively manage the many processes following an employee making a request to work more ‘flexibly’.
Clients can decide whether their employees are able to raise a request themselves online via their self-service dashboard, or whether to restrict the creating of a case by line managers or HR only.
The process management design follows these clear steps:
- Request/case recorded
- Eligibility auto-checked
- Meeting(s) scheduled to discuss, if required
- Record outcomes from meeting(s)
- Decision made – approve/reject/trial period
- Trial period review, if appropriate
- Appeal, if rejected
Once a case has been created, Youmanage checks the employees’ length of service being greater than 26 weeks, will check to ensure that no previous requests have been made within the last 12 month period, and will also provide notification alerts and reminders to managers to ensure that the case is heard correctly and concluded within a 3 month period, unless agreed otherwise with the employee concerned.
Youmanage prompts the users for all necessary and required information and asks for the case notes to include answers to key questions that need to be recorded and in line with information that is required to be submitted for consideration.
- A suggested effective date for the change
- A description of the changes being suggested to their current working
- A reason for the request being made
- A description of the impact the change would have on the business
- And if so, how the effects may be dealt with
Meeting dates are recorded against the case and these reside within Youmanage as Tasks for users involved in the process, until moved onto the next stage in the process, until the case has been concluded.
The line manager and/or ‘HR User’ can easily manage the entire process, end-to-end, by adding multiple comments as required following any and all discussions with the employee, and the employer. They will ultimately record their final decision, which provides an audit trail including the records of ‘who said what to whom, and when’.
Once the decision has been recorded, Youmanage presents a confirmation letter to the manager as the final stage in the process, which would be sent to the employee and a copy of the letter, which is time and date stamped, is automatically stored against their record within Youmanage.
You may reject any request for one or more of the following business reasons:
- The burden of additional costs
- Detrimental effect on ability to meet customer demand
- Inability to reorganise work among existing staff
- Inability to recruit additional staff
- Detrimental impact on quality
- Detrimental impact on performance
- Insufficiency of work during the periods that you propose to work
- Planned changes
In line with HR best practice and ACAS guidelines, we have also included the ability for an employee to appeal any decision, which again they can do via Self-Service or by the Manager starting the appeal process.
Youmanage has a series of standard letter and email templates that can be further defined and customised by each client. On each screen, as you undertake each of the processes, we provide best practice guidelines and a related documents section so that clients can publish any additional documentation to Managers and Employees; for example, the Company’s own Flexible Working Request policy.
To review this new capability and the entire Youmanage suite of modules, please adopt a free 30 day trial.