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Departmental Flexible Working

Volume 498: debated on Monday 2 November 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what flexi-time arrangements were available to staff of her Department in each of the last five years; and how many staff participated in such arrangements in each year. (290415)

The Department’s policy is to offer staff access to flexible working hours where it fits in with business needs. Where access to a flexible working hours scheme is given, it means that with agreement staff can:

Vary their times of arrival and departure from work

Vary the length and timing of their lunch break

Take time off under the terms of their flexi-time scheme

Flexible working incorporates a wide variety of working patterns that staff can adopt and includes:

Part-time—which means that staff work and are paid for less than full-time hours

As part of a jobshare which usually involves two people each employed on a part-time basis, but working together to cover a full-time post

Compressed hours by which staff work their total hours over a shorter period eg full weekly hours over four days rather than five

Term-time working allowing staff to take unpaid leave during the school holidays

A civil service jobshare website was launched in May 2009, to support those wishing to find jobshare partners.

The Department does not centrally collect statistical data on the number of staff who participate in flexi-time arrangements. The cost of extracting this information in the format requested would be at disproportionate cost.