Applying for flexible working

If you wish to apply for a flexible working option, you should fill out the Application form and submit this to your line manager. You can make 2 applications to work flexibly in any 12 month period. If you are applying for a post, you can request to work flexibly as part of the recruitment process.

For each option, you should give as much notice as possible for your request to be considered. The whole process should be concluded within 2 months. For a career break, you must give at least 2 months notice.

Please refer to the Flexible Working Policy for information on the options available.

It is helpful if you can provide information on your application including how you see your role and duties being fulfilled under the proposed alternative working arrangement to allow your manager to consider this, however this is not required.

Considering your request

Once you have applied, there are timescales which must be followed unless there is agreement between you and your manager to follow different timescales.

  • If your application is being agreed in full, there is no need for a consultation meeting.
  • If your manager wishes to discuss your application further or is unable to agree to it in full, your manager should arrange a consultation meeting with you to discuss your request as soon as possible and within 14 days of receipt of your application. You have the option to be accompanied at this meeting. You can bring a work colleague or Trade Union representative.
  • Your manager should provide you with a written response to your request advising you of the decision within 14 days of the meeting or 28 days of your application.

There may be circumstances where your manager needs more time to consider your application, such as where a service review is imminent or ongoing or if they need to recruit to backfill your hours as the recruitment process can take around 8 weeks depending on the post and recruitment checks needed. Your manager should discuss the timescale for any delay in the decision with you.


If your request is agreed, this will be a permanent change to your contract of employment unless this has been agreed as a short term (up to 3 months) temporary exceptional circumstance. Your manager should discuss any arrangements with you that need to be made to facilitate the change and the expected timescales for this.

You will receive an amendment to your contract and your manager will arrange for the relevant HR Forms to be completed to ensure that both Payroll and HR are aware of the change.

Your Service HR Business Partner will be able to offer advice and support as necessary.


Some requests may not be able to be accommodated. Your request will however be fully considered as outlined in how to consider flexible working requests'. If your request is refused, your manager will write to you to outline the reasons for refusal within 14 days of the consultation meeting. The reason must be for one of the reasons noted in the how to consider flexible working requests.

You have the right of appeal through the appeals stage of the Grievance Policy. Your written appeal should be submitted to your Head of Service/ Chief Officer within 7 days of receipt of the outcome of your application. The relevant timescales and process within the Grievance Policy will then apply.

Your responsibilities:

You will be expected to:

  • Make a written statutory request for flexible working using the application form
  • Discuss flexible working proposals openly and honestly to try to reach an arrangement that suits you and the service
  • Advise your manager of any difficulties arising from your flexible working arrangement, so that these can be further considered

Reasonable Adjustment requests for employees with disabilities

If you have a disability, you can make a reasonable adjustment request. You can do this by email or letter or you can ask for a meeting with your manager to discuss this.

If you are disabled and need support at work it's best for you to talk to your manager as soon as possible about what you need. You do not have to tell your manager that you are disabled. But when you do, we have a legal responsibility to support you.

When making a reasonable adjustment request, you could think about:

  • what would help you manage your health and work
  • what might be possible and reasonable for your team

Both you and your manager can suggest what reasonable adjustments might help.

Any reasonable adjustments that are agreed should be confirmed in writing. Your manager may refer you to Occupational Health for further advice and support.

Any requests for a reasonable adjustment related to your disability should be dealt with separately rather than as a flexible working request.