Flexitime Access in The Housing Authority

22 November 2018

In recent weeks members from the South Australian Housing Authority have been asking about their rights in regards to flexitime. Below is an excerpt from the South Australian Modern Public Sector Enterprise Agreement: Salaried 2017 which covers arrangements regarding flexitime.

25. FLEXITIME
25.1 Application of Flexitime
25.1.1 Flexitime is a flexible arrangement of working time, which allows employees to negotiate how, and when hours will be worked within agreed limits and conditions. Flexitime arrangements apply where agreed between an employee and their employer at the workplace.
25.1.2 Flexitime arrangements do not increase or reduce the total number of ordinary hours that must be worked by an employee.
25.2 Accrual and Taking Flexitime
25.2.1 An employee cannot lose, or forfeit, accrued flexitime.
25.2.2 An employee must take the entitlement of accrued flexitime at a time agreed with the employer.
25.2.3 Where an employee has accrued more than the allowable flexitime credit in an accounting period, the employer will provide an opportunity for the employee to reduce their flexitime credit to within the allowable amount during the following accounting period.
25.2.4 Employers and employees may agree to defer the opportunity to take accrued flexitime above the allowable amount to suit an identified specific workplace need.
25.2.5 In any event the accrued time must be taken within three accounting periods. After this time, the employer may direct the employee to take the accrued flexitime.
25.2.6 Where an employee has not been given the opportunity to reduce their flexitime credit in accordance with clause 25.2.3 above, the excess flexitime credit will be converted into payment. Such payment will be made at the ordinary rate of pay.

You will notice in here that it states that flexitime is to be agreed between an employer and an employee. This means that where possible reasonable access to flexitime should be afforded to all staff and where it is not those staff should be provided with a reasoning as to why they are being denied access to flexible working arrangements.

What should not occur is blanket instructions or emails to large groups of staff outlining what access they have to flexible working arrangements. This is not in the spirit of the Enterprise Agreement which allows for individual workers to arrange with their local manager working hours within the span of hours that both meets their workplace need and their personal need.

If members have concerns they do not have reasonable access to flexible working arrangements through flexitime they should send an email to their line manager asking for the reasons which they are being denied access. If access is not agreed after this members are asked to call our Members’ Rights Hotline on 8205 3227 for further advice.