Flexible Working

Best Practice Principles

Flexible Working Options

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Part time work is an arrangement whereby an officer or member of staff agrees a role on fewer than their normal hours of work. Police officers and staff may be recruited as part time workers.

In some cases, two or more officers or staff members may share the duties of the full time post. This is known as job sharing. although each job-sharer has an individual part time agreement contract. It is particularly useful to implement job-sharing roles where there is a requirement for 24-hour cover or in circumstances where the role would benefit from longer than normal full-time hours per week.

As part of workforce planning, Forces should identify their policing needs in relation to the policing demands of their area or department.

To comply with best practice staff and officers working reduced hours should not be expected to undertake workloads above their allocated hours i.e. full time for police officers = 40 hours and reduced hours should be calculated as a proportion of 40 hours. Forces should identify need and decide whether another officer or member of staff is required on reduced hours to fill the gap. It may be that a combination of workers on reduced hours is more or less that 1 full time post, but this should reflect Service needs. Any workforce gaps should be filled as quickly as possible.

Note: Correct accounting methods should reflect the hours of the people in post not a headcount - so 2 officers working 50% hours = 1 full time equivalent.

Note: If, having increased the number of officers in the department, one of the officers working part time requests a return to full time working their return may be to an alternative role if it can not be accommodated within the department.

Police officers who were recruited as full time officers and have reduced their hours have the right under Police Regulations and Determinations to full time work within 3 months of making a request to do so. This facility is not available to police staff who are contracted employees.

Job share partners should be sought through the normal selection procedures. If one job-share partner leaves, it is good practice to give the remaining partner(s) the opportunity of increasing their hours. If another partner cannot be found, and the force can show that the post must be filled on a full time basis, an officer may be moved to another part time role. This facility is not available to policing staff who are contracted employees

Part time police officers can still be required to stay after their agreed hours to meet pressing police demands in the same way as full time officers. Part time officers do not get enhanced overtime pay until they have worked over 40 hours (i.e. full time hours) in one week and over 8 hours on that day. There is no restriction on how few hours per week an officer can work.

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