Flexible working laws are changing. What does it mean for employers?

Flexible working laws are changing. What does it mean for employers?

Global HR platform Remote explains how people teams can both accommodate and make the most out of the latest amendments to the Flexible Working Regulations.


The Flexible Working (Amendment) Regulations 2023 include the right for employees to request flexible arrangements from day one of employment rather than having to wait 26 weeks. According to Jenny Marley, managing counsel, employment, at global HR platform Remote, this was not part of the original act but has since been included in the regulations, and is currently the only measure that is definitely being introduced in April. 

Other changes are also expected to come into force then, adds Marley, but this has yet to be confirmed. These include allowing employees to make two requests in a year rather than one and removing the need to explain what impact they believe the change would have on the employer. Employers must also respond to requests within two months rather than three, which could – along with the right to make two requests per year – increase the administrative burden on HR teams. 

Employers need to make sure their policies are updated, Marley says, and that they comply with the requirements of the regulations if they do get requests. They must also make sure managers are aware of the changes, although there’s no need to communicate them to employees. “Managers need to know that if they get one of these requests they need to speak to HR, or be trained to know what to do with it,” she says.