Overview: Special work arrangements can increase productivity within any organization. Often, staff members who are otherwise willing to work feel constrained by other professional or personal responsibilities. Employers may offer flexibility in working arrangements to aid in the retention of top performers.
Alternative work schedules may include flextime or compressed workweeks. Flexibility in the amount of hours worked could be achieved through part-time work or job sharing. Employees seeking to work from home may negotiate telecommuting agreements with their employers.
Flexible working options aid in retaining employees with caregiving responsibilities, and may be offered as reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities. The option of alternate work arrangements may also aid in recruiting a robust and diverse workforce. However, employers must ensure that any applicable external legal requirements, be they federal, state or local, are met. In addition, employers must enforce any internal work rules consistently.
Trends: With the proliferation of mobile devices, many workers have allowed their professional lives to bleed into (and, in some cases, detract from) their personal lives. In response to these concerns, experts in the field have developed a number of resources addressing the work-life balance. Interestingly, some business experts have replaced the term "work-life balance" in favor of the terms "work-life blend" or "work-life integration" when explaining how employees address professional and personal responsibilities.
Author: Marta Moakley, JD, Legal Editor
An Ohio federal court ruled that "crying spells" were sufficient for an employee to take FMLA leave and found that the employer's dubious response to the leave may have violated the FMLA.
Users may now access the resource How to Protect Trade Secrets When Employing a Mobile Workforce and Telecommuters. In addition, a Nondisclosure Agreement With Return of Materials Provisions form has been added to the Policies and Documents Tool.
An employer may use this form agreement to protect against the dissemination of trade secrets and other employer property. This form should be used when an employee is initially hired within an organization, and steps should be taken to ensure that new and existing employees understand their responsibilities to maintain the confidentiality of the employer's business information.
In today's changing workforce, employers are no longer confined to the walls of their bricks and mortar facilities. Now employees are more mobile and no longer tied to a desk. This How To will assist an employer with clear directives on how to safeguard its trade secrets in light of an increasingly mobile workforce.
The San Francisco Family Friendly Workplace Ordinance protects an employee's right to request flexible working arrangements, includes a framework for processing requests, adds retaliation protections for workers who have made a request under the ordinance and includes posting, notice and recordkeeping requirements.
In-depth review of the spectrum of Federal employment law requirements HR must follow with respect to Managing Employees in Special Situations
San Francisco's Board of Supervisors has passed an ordinance that would allow employees with dependents the right to request more workplace flexibility. The Family Friendly Workplace Ordinance would allow workers to submit a written request for an alternative work schedule that would better fit their caregiving needs.
Wal-Mart joins other major US retailers that are adding thousands of employees to their payrolls. Similar to what Wal-Mart has done, retailers may choose not only to hire temporary or seasonal workers but also to modify the work hours and employment status of the current workforce.
XpertHR's Financial Services Resource Center for HR helps financial services employers handle their most challenging employment issues by bringing relevant resources together in one place for easy access.
HR guidance on the legal risks and benefits of special work arrangements.