Currently, an employee needs 26 weeks’ service to make a flexible working request; however, under new regulations laid before parliament, this will become a day one right from 6th April 2024.
This new right will apply to all flexible working requests made on or after 6th April 2024, so you may get more requests to work flexibly from this date.
However, the statutory right remains only to request, not to have a flexible working arrangement. You can still refuse these requests on one or more acceptable business grounds, which should already be set out in your flexible working policy.
What should you do now?
Consider possible flexible working options when designing and creating new roles and whether they would work in practice so you’re ready to consider and respond to any early requests.