According to new research from the Department of Trade and Industry, more employees are becoming aware of their right to request flexible working conditions. According to the DTI’s second Felxible Working Employee Survey 2005, 65 per cent of the 3,222 workers quizzed knew that their bosses had a duty to consider requests for part time or flexible working hours, compared with 41 per cent in 2003. The number of workers asking for some sort of work flexibility over the past two years is 14 per cent of the overall workforce, although almost 25 per cent of workers with young children made such a request. The survey found that employers accepted 81 per cent of requests, up slightly on the 77 per cent in 2003.

Nearly double the number of women (19 per cent) than men (10 per cent) were likely to ask for flexible working, with women being most likely to ask for part time hours and men preferring flexitime. The survey found that one in five workers had taken time off in the last two years in order to care for somebody.

Also the month the Institute of Directors, in association with Vodafone, launched a business guide to mobile working, featuring practical advice on how best to use technology to implement a beneficial mobile working strategy. The guide costs £9.95 and can be purchased from the IoD bookshop at www.iod.com

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