The last few days have thrown up a host of changes for both employers and employees to take on board. The announcement that, schools and nurseries across the UK will be closed to all but vulnerable children and those of essential workers has, for many, added another consideration.
How should employers respond?
The simple response we are suggesting to this is flexibility wherever possible. That must come on both sides.
Employers need to bear in mind that families come in all sizes and forms – the support networks available to each along with their needs for childcare will vary. But it’s also important that employees understand business realities. An open discussion is often the key to striking a balanced approach.
That approach could involve:
- flexibility around working hours or days
- use of annual leave or accrued flexi time if that is in place
- employees taking unpaid leave
Whatever combination of any (or all) or these steps is used, having a clear plan is key. It will help business owners to manage scheduling and workloads, whilst ensuring staff aren’t putting unrealistic expectations on themselves and it will also help employees to manage their time.
Here, we’ve created a simple format which can be used by your employees to set their new working hours.