With the school summer holidays in full swing, employees with young families could be struggling to balance their job and child caring commitments.
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Managing Holiday Requests During the Holidays
Below are some areas to consider when managing working parents in the summer months.
1. Annual leave
Parents who want their time off to coincide with the school holidays may all make requests for leave at the same time, something that you may not be able to allow.
The best way of managing leave requests is to adopt a ‘first come, first served’ policy. This way, you can make sure that leave is granted fairly.
2. Flexible working
Parents might want to reduce their overall hours, or ask to work from home for a temporary period over the summer, which could be an alternative to annual leave.
You don’t have to allow this. But you do need to consider the request if the employee has worked for you for 26 weeks or more and hasn’t made a request in the last 12 months.
3. Time off for dependants
Staff may believe that time off for dependants entitles them to unpaid leave during the school holidays to look after their child, but this isn’t the case.
Whilst a schoolchild will be considered a dependant, this right is only reserved for emergency care. You should explain this to your employees if necessary.
4. Parental leave
If employees have worked for you for over a year, they’re entitled to take a period of unpaid parental leave to look after a child under the age of 18, provided they give you 21 days’ notice.
Generally, employees can take up to four weeks of parental leave per year in one-week blocks. But you may consider allowing them to group four weeks together to cover the summer period
5. Bringing children into work
Some employees may even request the possibility of bringing their children into work for a period during the summer holidays.
You don’t have to allow this and should take care before deciding to do so; having a child at work could present health & safety issues and distract the employee.
If you're struggling with holiday requests or have an HR query and you're not sure where to turn, speak to a Croner expert today on 01455 858 132.
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