The fact that everyone will soon be able to request flexible working hours in the UK, has made me think again about my own work situation, especially since I am now a working mother.
UK work flexibility law
From 30 June 2014, any employee with 26 weeks’ continuous service at a company in the UK, will be able to apply for work flexibility for any reason. Employees will be able to request a change to their working hours, working time or working location. This includes job sharing, working from home, part time working, compressed hours and flexitime. Employers will have to give the requests serious consideration and can basically only reject the flexible working request, based on one or more of eight specified business grounds.
As a Communications Specialist who do a lot of writing, editing and updating of websites, the bulk of my job could be done from home. A laptop, cell phone, telephone and Internet connection, are basically all I need. Intermittent travel to the office for meetings would be easy to handle.
Benefits of flexible working hours
And best of all, being a fast and efficient worker, I would be able to structure my working hours to spend more time with my precious little man. As a working mother, I don’t see that much of him as I have a two hour train commute every day and only get home at about 6.30 pm on most days. Mornings are difficult as I have to be at the station before 7 am and the poor little dear has to be pulled out of bed early in the increasing cold and darkness of approaching winter.
People can be monitored when they work from home and severely penalised if they miss deadlines.
Companies would save on office space, electricity, coffee and a multitude of other things. Most important of all, they would help to eliminate the moral decline of society and help to create a healthy family life. Children would spend much needed time with their mothers and grow into balanced and mature individuals.
For now, I continue to face 10 hour days (sometimes functioning on disrupted sleep) and then mustering up enough energy to handle an extremely busy one-year old every evening. Luckily the combination of coffee, sugar and exercise seem to charge the batteries somewhat, even though it leaves you drained in the long run.