A recent survey conducted by Acas has revealed that a significant majority of employees and employers in the UK are unaware of imminent changes to flexible working rights.

According to the survey, 70% of employees and 43% of employers are not aware that the law is changing to facilitate easier requests for flexible working arrangements.

Currently, employees with at least 26 weeks of service have the right to request flexible working. However, starting from April 6, 2024, this right will extend to all employees from their first day of employment. Despite the impending change, many individuals in the workforce remain uninformed.

Preparation for Change: Acas Offers Guidance

To support both employers and employees in navigating these changes, Acas has revised its Code of Practice on requests for flexible working. This updated guidance aims to provide clarity and good practice recommendations to ensure a smooth transition.

Susan Clews, Chief Executive of Acas, emphasised the importance of preparation for the upcoming changes. She highlighted the potential benefits of flexible working arrangements in the workplace and stressed the need for both employers and employees to be aware and prepared for the new legislation.

Key Information in the Code of Practice

The revised Code of Practice addresses various aspects of flexible working requests, including guidelines on who should accompany employees at meetings to discuss such requests, the importance of transparency in the decision-making process, and the recommendation for employers to offer an appeal process in case of request rejection.

Employers and employees can access a preview of the new Code of Practice on requests for flexible working on the Acas website. This resource aims to provide early insights into the upcoming changes and help stakeholders prepare for the implementation of the new legislation on April 6, 2024.