The Government states that ‘Flexible Working’ is a way of working that suits an employee’s needs. This could include flexible working hours e.g. start times and finishes or even working from home. Employees have the legal right to request for ‘Flexible Working’ and this is not exclusive to parents and carers. It is known as making a statutory application. 


Who can ask for ‘Flexible Working’?


Employees must have worked continuously for the same employer for at least 26 weeks to be eligible. There can only be one request for flexible working per employee per working year. 


What is required of employers?


Requests for flexible working must be dealt with in a reasonable manner, and should include: 

  • Assessment of the advantages of the request 
  • Assessment of the disadvantages of the request 
  • A meeting with the employee who has made the request 
  • Offer an appeal process 


Types of flexible working 


We are all very familiar with the concept of working from home, as this was the case for many people during the Covid pandemic. However, there are a wide range of circumstances that can count as ‘Flexible Working’ 


  • Compressed hours: working full-time hours but over fewer days 
  • Part-time: working less than full-time hours by normally working fewer days 
  • Staggered hours: the employee has a different break, start and finish times
  • Job sharing two people splitting the hours of one job 
  • Working from home: completing some or all of the work outside of the normal place of work 
  • Flexitime: core hours are worked, with flexible start & finish times
  • Phased retirement: older aged workers can start to reduce hours & work part-time 
  • Annualised hours: an employee has a set amount of hours they must work over the year, with some core hours which must be regularly worked


A Statuary Application 


The process of making a statutory application includes the following:

  • Writing a letter/ email to the employer 
  • The employer must consider the request in a reasonable manner, and reach a decision in 3 months 
  • If the employer agrees, then the contract of the employee needs to be changed to reflect this decision 
  • If the employer disagrees, they must write to the employee explaining the reasoning behind the decision. 


Contact Us 

If you’d like more information on your rights for flexible working and any other issues within the workplace please get in touch. Call us on 01782 662424 or email us at