A recent survey* of 2,000 UK workers has revealed that more than half have been negatively affected by the demands of work, with many acknowledging a detrimental effect on their personal lives.
Twenty per cent of respondents said that their work had caused them to miss a significant milestone in their children’s lives, such as a school play or a birthday party, with over a quarter claiming to have missed such an event on more than five occasions. Whilst this is sometimes unavoidable, regularly prioritising work commitments over important family events is not healthy. The same study found that, for 11% of parents, working late and not being able to ‘switch off’ in the evenings had distanced them from their children.
Earlier this year, The Modern Families Index 2016** told a similar story, with nearly half of respondents saying that their working life was becoming increasingly stressful, and more than a third saying that the pressures of work were negatively impacting their family life.
If you’re a working parent in this situation it’s worth knowing that, since June 2014, employees who have been with a company for 26 weeks or more have had the legal right to request flexible working. This means that an employee can make a ‘statuary application’ to work flexitime, work from home, work part time or work compressed hours (for example), and their employer is required by law to consider the request and provide business reasons if the request is denied.
There are many benefits to your employer too, including reduced absenteeism, increased productivity and access to a larger talent pool. You can read more about this here
For more information about how to make an application to work flexibly, visit Gov.uk
* Research by Coople, 2016