Flexible Working Hours

At Ten2Two we often get questions about flexible working hours and what options are available to employees, especially those who don’t necessarily want a drop in salary or a reduction in their full time working hours.

In the UK, there is no legal definition of the number of working hours that constitute full time working, although employees cannot be require to work more than 48 hours per week (unless they have signed an opt-out agreement). The number of full time hours can therefore vary from employer to employer but full time generally means 35 hours or more per week with 37.5 hour or 40 hour contracts quite commonplace. Increasingly employees are looking for flexible working hours with a full time job.

A part-time employee is generally considered to be someone who works less than 35 hours per week. Employees can consider working part time every day (par time days) or full time days but only on certain days (part time week). Alternative ways to work on a part time basis are to take a short term contract or work freelance which gives workers the option to manage their own time around school holidays or other family commitments or busy weeks during the year.

Below we have summarised some of the flexible working hour arrangements below, both full time and part time, and consider the advantages and disadvantages flexibility can bring to your working schedule, often without that drop in salary.

 DescriptionAdvantagesDisadvantagesFT or PT
Condensed HoursWork full-time hours in four days e.g work four 10-hour days, instead of five 8-hour daysKeep a full time salary
Get time off on a specific day
Need to communicate with your team members to ensure continuity on the non-work dayFull time
Staggered hoursWork full time hours starting earlier or finishing later e.g 7am - 3pmKeep a full time salary
Finish early or start late
Need to be organised and disciplined in your scheduleFull time
Work from homeChange your place of work on certain daysReduce commuting time
Less workplace distractions
More productive and focused, especially for writing strategic plans or reviews
Keep a full-time salary
Domestic distractions and interruptions
No person-to-person or team interaction
Full time
Nine day fortnightWork 9 full days instead of 10 over a two week periodKeep a full time salary
Get time off on a specific day every two weeks
Need to communicate with your team members to ensure continuity on the non-work dayFull time
Part Time daysWork shorter days during the week e.g 9am -3pm = 30 hour weekWork presence every day
Finish early - useful for school pick up
Need to be disciplined about finish time Part Time
Part time weekWork full time days but not every day e.g 3 full days 9-5pm = 24 hours per weekFull presence and productivity on days of work
Need to communicate with your team members to ensure continuity on non-work daysPart Time