The CIPD is partnering with the charity Working Families and the UK Government’s Flexible Working Taskforce to re-launch the ‘Happy to Talk Flexible Working’ campaign, helping employers to realise the benefits of flexible working from the point of recruitment. The campaign encourages employers to advertise jobs as flexible by using the ‘Happy to Talk Flexible Working’ strapline and logo in their job advertisements.

The re-launch comes as the UK Government has announced that the Flexible Working Bill has received Royal Assent, meaning millions of British workers will have more flexibility over where and when they work, from 2024. 

Workers will benefit from new measures when the legislation comes into effect, including:

  • New requirements for employers to consult with the employee before rejecting their flexible working request.
  • Permission to make two statutory requests in any 12-month period (rather than the current one request).
  • Reduced waiting times for decisions to be made (within which an employer administers the statutory request) from three months to two months.
  • The removal of existing requirements that the employee must explain what effect, if any, the change applied for would have on the employer and how that effect might be dealt with.

Alongside the Bill, the UK Government has announced workers will have the right to request flexible working from day one of a new job, which the CIPD has long campaigned for. In December 2022, the CIPD celebrated a win for its #Flexfrom1st campaign, when the UK Government announced its plans to make flexible working the default. 

“By using the tagline ‘Happy To Talk Flexible Working’ in job advertisements, employers can open up recruitment to wider talent pools and create fairer and more inclusive workplaces. This transparency supports workers to ask for flexibility.” 

Peter Cheese, Chief Executive, CIPD

Working Families and the Taskforce, chaired by CIPD Chief Executive Peter Cheese, have also developed new guidance for employers, outlining the business case for flexible working and offering step-by-step instructions for designing and advertising flexible roles that work for businesses. The guidance will give employers a head start in thinking about how all their roles can be done flexibly.

CIPD research shows that an estimated two million (six per cent) of UK employees changed jobs last year due to a lack of flexible working options, and an estimated four million (12 per cent) left their profession/sector altogether because of a lack of flexibility. 

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