Alternative work arrangements, such as compressed work weeks and flexible hours, are still in use in many workplaces, teams, and units. They can be a useful tool to help you achieve better work/life balance.
If you were on an alternative work arrangement and it was suspended, you can ask to have it reinstated at any time. If you have not had an alternative work arrangement, you can request one at any time.
If you require flexibility beyond what an alternative work arrangement can offer (for example, if you have a health condition that makes you more vulnerable to COVID-19, if you have a dependent who is immunocompromised, or other family-related responsibilities), you can request further flexibility from your manager.
Starting the process is easy:
1. Reach out to your manager to set up a conversation related to flexible working arrangements and your reason(s) for it. If you do not make this request via email, be sure to record the date and make personal notes of each conversation.
2. There are many ways to start this conversation. Some examples include:
“I am experiencing challenges with returning to the workplace and balancing childcare obligations.”
“I feel that I am struggling with feelings of isolation during remote work.”
“I am concerned about returning to the workplace because I have a health condition that makes me particularly vulnerable to COVID-19.”
“It would help if…”
3. During the conversation, identify the challenge(s) and the arrangement you seek. You may be presented with an alternative or be expected to talk through another possible solution.
Workplace Representatives are trained union members who have volunteered to confidentially assist members like you in the workplace. They should be your first point of contact in seeking information and representation with an issue at work.
Your Workplace Representative may ask you to use the union’s secure web-based system, RADAR, to provide details about your situation. RADAR will help you and your Workplace Representative keep track of things without the privacy concerns that could come from using the Employer’s email system.