Will Dutch Law Influence Other Countries to review the Right to ‘Work From Home’?

By Helen Burrowes

HR Consultant

On 5 July, Dutch parliament approved legislation making it a legal right to work from home. They are the first country to enable working from home by law.

The practice behind the law has not yet been published, however we look forward to seeing how this progresses and what processes will follow. 

Remote working in the UK

Depending on the type of the role and the tasks associated, remote working has been a practice for some time.  During the Covid 19 pandemic this practice escalated following the government guidance to work from home to reduce the spread of the virus.  This saw an increased number of people working from home. Post pandemic, we are seeing these arrangements continue and becoming more formalised, with businesses outlining their expectations on working from home and offering new ‘hybrid’ working arrangements on a permanent basis.

Many companies have now formally adopted hybrid working, allowing employees who can effectively work from home to split their time between the office and remote location(s).  It is recommendable for companies to ensure that they have a clearly communicated Hybrid working policy in place regarding the arrangements and guidelines of hybrid working.

Where employees require additional flexibility, a flexible working request can be made. Currently the law states that, ALL employees are entitled to make a flexible working request, if they have worked from the same employer for 26 weeks or more.  On receipt of the flexible working request the employer must handle the request by considering the advantages and disadvantages of the request, have a meeting with the employee to discuss the request, and offer an appeal.  Under this process, if the new work pattern is approved, changes to terms would become permanent, and a variation to Contract issued.

If you need to implement a Hybrid working policy for your business, or would like advice on handling flexible working requests,  please contact our Nockolds HR Team on 0345 646 0406 or fill in our online enquiry form and a member of our Team will be in touch.