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How to Request Flex Time at Work

Obtaining flex time or flexible working refers to choosing the times you work that suit you as an employee. Flex time guidelines differ from country to country based on labor laws. Northern Ireland, for instance, presents a different set of flex time policies compared to the UK, where you must work for at least 26 weeks to be granted permission to apply, notes There are, therefore, instances when you can be denied permission to tender in your statutory application, making it significant to know how to go about the flexible working application process in the UK.

Choose the Kind of flex working you need

Pick the type of flex working you need by deciding if you want to share the workload with someone else or whether you want to work from your house or any other place. Consider that you’re also at liberty to choose part-time stints or compressed working hours which can be significant if your career is demanding or your organization is understaffed. Under the compressed hours plan you can, for instance, work for 15 days continuously and then take time off for a few days. Go for annualised hours if you want to work for a specific number of hours a year, staggered hours is preferable if you alternate shifts with other employees as phased retirement allows you to reduce the number of your official work hours owing to old age.

Make the application

Write a letter of application to your employer. Indicate the date and state that it’s a statutory letter to make it standard and to get it in line with the UK labor law requirements. Lay down details about your current work hours and how you would like them to be changed. Give your employer at least three months to get back to you through writing; the period could be longer if you both agree. Append your signature on the new terms and conditions of work, indicating the new flex time arrangements, should your statutory application sail through.


Make an appeal in case your employer turns down your application even though it’s clear that you qualify. Follow the company’s appeal guidelines on the subject – you need to do this within the first three months of getting your employer’s response. Indicate whether the employer delayed the response longer than agreed and consider getting legal advice if you want to make a strong case to have the decision reversed. Take your case a notch higher by approaching the employment tribunal if you feel that your application was not given due consideration, or if it was wrongfully withdrawn.

Don’t shy away from asking for the right flex time you need since a properly arranged work schedule is beneficial to both the employer and you the employee. Remind your employer that your request aims at stepping up the quantity and the quality of your output and it’s bound to grant you the job satisfaction you need to attain greater heights in your professional life.


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