Job Sharing Policy

1. Definition

Job Sharing is defined, for the purpose of this policy as the voluntary sharing by 2 persons of the duties and responsibilities of an established full time job. The salary and appropriate conditions of service are shared on a pro-rata basis according to the hours worked by each job sharer.

Job sharing is available to prospective employees (if the job is advertised as being suitable for job sharing) and existing employees who wish to reduce their hours.

The purpose of the scheme is two-fold:-

(a) For employees, it provides the opportunity for working conditions which meet changing individual circumstances, and

(b) For the Trust, it allows for the retention of trained and experienced employees who might otherwise leave.

2. Eligibility

This Policy applies to all employees of the Trust.

All permanent established posts will be considered eligible for job sharing. For reasons of management consistency, strategy and policy, Chief Official posts are deemed to be inappropriate for job sharing.

Furthermore, an Executive Director, or nominated officer, can refuse an application for job sharing if the job is deemed to be unsuitable for sharing. Written reasons for the decision must be provided and employees may have the right to appeal in accordance with the Trust’s Grievance Procedure.

3. Application for Job Sharing

(a) Adverts

Where a post becomes vacant and is identified as being suitable for job sharing, it will be advertised in the normal way but with a note to the effect that applications will be accepted from persons wishing to job share.

Employees wishing to job share their existing post should submit their request, in writing, to their Executive Director, or nominated officer, who will approve or reject their application. To allow advertising, interviewing and appointment procedures to be followed, applications to job share must be submitted not later than 8 weeks before the proposed “sharing” date. It is not necessary for an employee to have an identified partner before applying for job sharing. All such vacancies will be advertised in the normal way.

(b) Applications

Applications for job sharing can be made in a number of ways (subject to the post being deemed suitable for job sharing).

(i) An existing post holder may apply to job share and the remaining portion of the post would be advertised.

(ii) Two candidates can apply jointly for a post and both be successful, having been considered jointly alongside every full-time application.

(iii) One successful candidate can be appointed to a vacant post on a job sharing basis and the remaining portion would then be advertised.

(iv) Two candidates applying independently of each other can be appointed to a vacant post subject to both satisfying the requirements of the job, having been considered jointly alongside every full-time application.

In all cases, the Executive Director, or nominated officer, reserves the right to determine the suitability of an individual for a post. Where one or both of the applicants for a job sharing post are not selected there is no right of appeal except where such a right exists by way of statute.

Where an existing employee wishes to job share, implementation will be dependent on the appointment of a suitable sharer. If a suitable sharer cannot be appointed, the job sharing arrangement will not go ahead. There is no right of appeal against the decision of the Trust as to the suitability of applicants for the one half of a job sharing post.

4. Loss of Job Sharing Partner

In the event of a job sharer leaving the shared post, the remaining sharer shall be offered the post on a full-time basis. If the remaining sharer does not wish to take the post full-time, a suitable job sharing partner will be sought.

If it is not possible to recruit a suitable replacement, every effort will be made to redeploy the remaining sharer. Wherever possible, such redeployment will be to a post on a equivalent grade and conditions, although this cannot be guaranteed.

If no redeployment is available, or if it is offered and not accepted, the remaining job sharer will be dismissed. Such a decision will only be taken as a last resort and only after management has fully consulted with the employee and explored every possible avenue.

5. Sharing Arrangements

The hours of work will be agreed to meet the operational needs of the Service and, as far as possible, to suit both job sharers. An appropriate arrangement may be selected from a variety of working patterns.

The post may be shared on a split-day or split-week basis giving each employee a pro-rata share of the full-time hours of the post on either a morning or afternoon basis or 2/3 days on alternative weeks, or 2 ½ days per week or other sharing arrangements which are deemed to be suitable.

Whatever the arrangements, over a reasonable period, each sharer’s average hours must equate to their contractual hours. The agreed arrangements will be included in each sharer’s contract of employment.

The Executive Director, or nominated officer, has the right to insist on a pattern of work to meet the exigencies of the services and the requirements of an overlap period and on review of the arrangements, to subsequently amend starting and finishing times, patterns or work, overlap, ect.

There may be circumstances where an employee wishes to hold two different job sharing posts within the Trust. Clearly, the operational viability and practicality of such an arrangement would have to be carefully considered. However, such an arrangement will be supported wherever it is deemed to be practicable.

6. Probationary Period

In situations where the suitability of a job sharing arrangement is in doubt, the Executive Director, or nominated officer, may apply a six month probationary period to establish the suitability of a post for job sharing.

The job share contracts of employment will clearly indicate the terms of the probationary period and the consequences of the job being found unsuitable for job sharing.

The suitability of a job share will be carefully monitored during the probationary period and any problems addressed at an early stage and steps taken to remedy them. Arrangements will be terminated only after careful consideration and only after all other possible solutions have been exhausted.

Ultimately, if a job sharing arrangement, which has been set up under a probationary period, does not work out the arrangement will be terminated. The resulting effect on the employees will depend upon the partners position prior to the introduction of the job sharing arrangements:-

(a) Existing postholder who had applied to job share full time post.

Original partner would immediately revert to full-time status. The other partner would be offered redeployment to other suitable available employment and if this was not possible the contract of employment would be terminated. If the other partner, prior to the start of the job sharing arrangement, held a permanent substantive post within the Trust, the substantive post should be filled on a temporary basis for the six month period of the probationary period. If the sharing arrangement is deemed to be unsuitable, the other partner would revert to his/her substantive post.

(b) Both partners have joined the organisation to take up job sharing posts.

The job would revert to full-time status with both partners applying, if they wish, for the post. If one or both do not want to work full time, attempts will be made to redeploy the individuals to a suitable alternative post. If redeployment is not available, or if offered and not accepted, the sharers will be given appropriate notice to revert the hours of the post to full-time and the job sharing contract of employment will be terminated.

7. Conditions of Service

(a) Application of Grade/Salary Scales

Job Sharers will be graded accordingly to the salary scale/grade applicable to the post although placing within the grade will be on individual basis. The salary will be paid on a pro-rata basis in accordance with the number of hours worked. If weekly hours vary (i.e. a short week and a long week) payment will be made on the average hours. Incremental progression will be in accordance with the conditions applying to full-time employees.

(b) Contract of Employment

Job Sharers will have individual contracts of employment with particulars of the post and any associated conditions specified for the individual.

(c) Hours of Duty

The normal hours of duty for a job share will be a pro-rata share of those of the full-time post as agreed on appointment. Details of the hours of duty, including pattern, overlap, variations, ect, will be clearly detailed in the statement of particulars for the post.

(d) Overtime

Payment for overtime working will be made only when an individual job sharer exceeds the total weekly hours for the equivalent full-time post.

(e) Annual Leave

The annual leave entitlement for job sharers will be a pro-rata share of the entitlement which the individual would have received if working full-time (based on the number of days or weeks worked per annum).

(f) Public holidays

The paid public holidays allocated to each job sharer will, when combined, not exceed the total applicable to an equivalent full-time appointment. Sharers are required to be flexible in order to ensure equity.

(g) Special Leave

Special leave will be granted in accordance with the conditions applying to full-time employees.

(h) Irregular Hours Payment/Weekend Allowance/Shift Allowance

Irregular Hours Payment/Weekend Allowance/Shift Allowance will be paid to job sharers who satisfy the conditions laid down in the Scheme of Salaries/Pay & Conditions of Service.

(i) Statutory Sick Pay & Sickness Allowance

Job sharers will be entitled to statutory sick pay and sickness allowance in accordance with the Scheme of Salaries/Pay & Conditions of Services.

(j) Maternity Leave

Job sharers will be entitled to Maternity Leave in accordance with the Scheme of Salaries/Pay & Conditions of Service.

(k) Hospital & Medical Appointments

Job Sharers will be expected to arrange medical and other appointments outside working hours. Where this is not possible, e.g., clinics or surgeries which take place on set days of the week coinciding with the job sharer’s working hours, leave to attend appointments should be dealt with under normal special leave arrangements.

(l) Training

Training needs of job sharers will be determined on an individual basis. Job sharers are covered by the terms of the Trust’s Training Policy. Attendance at training courses on days on which the sharer does not work will be avoided as far as possible. Where it in unavoidable, time-off in lieu will be given or the sharer may be offered correspondence or distance learning depending on the circumstances.

(m) Flexi-time

Job sharers will not, normally, be eligible for flexible working hours. However the Executive Director, or nominated officer, may agree where it is a practical option.

(n) Car Allowances

Where the full-time post has car user allowance, job sharers will both be entitled to claim for reimbursement of approved mileage. However, in posts which have an Essential Users Allowance, each sharer will be entitled only to a proportion of the “lump sum” allowance relative to the number of hours worked.

(o) Car Leasing

Where the full-time post has the benefit of a car lease, job sharers will be entitled to participate in the Car Leasing Scheme. In such cases, each sharer will be entitled only to a proportion of the benefits under the Car Leasing Scheme relative to the number of hours worked.

(p) Superannuation

Job sharers will be eligible for membership of the Superannuation Scheme in terms of the Local Government Superannuation (Scotland) Regulations 1974 – 86.

(q) General conduct

Job sharers will be covered by the conditions as they apply to full-time employees.

(r) Discipline & Grievance Procedure

Job sharers will be covered by the terms of the Trust’s Disciplinary & Grievance Procedures.

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