Flexible working: Respond to a statutory request to work flexibly

When to use this workflow

Employees who have a minimum of 26 weeks' continuous service have a statutory right to request flexible working. Employers must deal with requests to work flexibly in a "reasonable manner".

Use this workflow to ensure that, on receiving a flexible working request, you comply with the requirements set out in the law on the right to request flexible working.

Employers can choose their own time limits under this workflow as long as the process is completed within three months.

Employers that want to extend the overall time limit beyond three months or the particular time limits within their own procedure (for example, 28 days to hold a meeting) should seek agreement from the employee to do so.

While it is not strictly speaking necessary for employers to have an appeal stage, it is good practice to do so. This workflow therefore assumes that an appeal stage is part of the process.

This workflow is an example of a legally compliant process. Where your organisation's own procedures go beyond the minimum requirements, you should follow these.

Workflow authors: Produced by the XpertHR editorial team.

Key Steps

  • Invite the employee to a meeting to discuss the request
  • Notify the employee of the acceptance of the request/refusal of the request and offer the right of appeal
  • Invite the employee to an appeal meeting
  • Notify the employee that the appeal is upheld/rejected

Key "What if?" Events

  • What if? ... an employee seeks to amend his or her flexible working request
  • What if? ... an employee raises a complaint about the right to request flexible working process
  • What if? ... an employee withdraws his or her flexible working request
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