The government is seeking to improve access to flexible working for employees. The hope is that increasing transparency will help employees access the flexibility that they may need to stay in the labour market, as well as helping job applicants make more informed decisions about job opportunities.
The CBI has responded to the government’s proposals because business fully supports working with the government to help create more inclusive workplaces. The consultation considers two main proposals: whether large employers (250+ employees) should publish their family-related leave and pay and flexible working policies; and whether employers should have a duty to consider and state whether a job can be done flexibly when advertising a role.
Many businesses have already taken steps to be more transparent about their family friendly policies to allow employees to access the flexibility environment they need. The CBI believes that mandatory publication of flexible working and family related policies on a company website will support more inclusive workplaces, but that requiring jobs to be advertised as flexible is not the best way to improve access to flexible working. Instead, businesses want more support from the government to encourage employees to have conversations about flexible working options with their employers and during the hiring process.
The CBI recommends that government:
- Introduces a mandatory requirement for employers (250+ employees) to publish their family related leave and pay and flexible working policies on their website
- Considers introducing a new reporting portal where businesses must also publish their policies
- Enables businesses to retain flexibility over the content of their family friendly policies
- Introduces guidance which sets out what information and level of detail businesses should include in their policies
- Does not introduce a mandatory requirement for employers to assess and state in the advert whether a job can be done on a flexible basis
- Works with businesses to step up public awareness of flexible working options in order to drive open conversations between employers and employees.
For more information about our lobbying on this area, please contact Katie Miller.