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									                                                                                             Human Resources

Guidelines for Managers dealing with the Right to Request Time off for Training

From 6 April 2010 employment legislation gives eligible members of staff the right to request time off
for training purposes. As an employer committed to Equal Opportunities it is important that each
individual request is given careful consideration. The following guidelines have been prepared to help
line managers to deal with any such requests, however, managers are advised to seek further advice
from their HR Adviser/SD Adviser if appropriate.

1. A member of staff who has been employed for a minimum of 26 weeks and meets the criteria set
   out in the LJMU Right to Request Time Off for Training Policy and Procedure document may
   make a written request to their line manager. When making their request they must provide the
   information outlined on pages 1 and 2 of the aforementioned document.

2. Although members of staff have the right to request that the University allows them time to
   undertake training, they do not have the right to be paid for the time spent training if the line
   manager agrees to the request. The line manager may agree to paid time off spent training
   recognising the value of the training proposed, alternatively he/she may reach agreement with
   the of staff member to work flexibly to make up the time off for training or that they will take
   unpaid time off to train (reference should be made to the LJMU Sponsorship Policy for CSD/HE
   Study and Vocational Qualifications).

3. If the request for training is:

                           i.    appropriate e.g. linked to their job &/or for development purposes
                          ii.    will either benefit the service e.g. improve the effectiveness of the
                          iii.   cause minimal disruption e.g. within the team/department

      and is, therefore, acceptable then the line manager may agree to the full training proposal and
      should confirm this in writing ensuring the correspondence is dated, confirming the details of the
      study or training involved including the start date (refer to point 4). Managers should ensure
      compliance with other University policies and procedures for example: Equal and Diversity
      Policy; Part-time Working etc. Copies of both the request and
      the response must be sent to HR.

      If the training is provided by LJMU staff should apply via staff infobase.

      (Managers should contact their HR Adviser if they have any queries regarding a request for
      training and to discuss any amendments of contract or work pattern, if applicable, prior to

Guidelines for Managers
Request for Training
Human Resources
April 2010
4. Confirmation of agreement to the training request should include the following details:

               Subject of study/training
               Where and when the training is expected will take place, and over what period
               Who will provide or supervise the training
               What qualifications (if any) the training will lead to the award of
               How the costs of the training will be met

      Should approval result in changes to their terms and conditions (e.g. changing their working
      hours) HR will issue any changes to the individual’s contract.

5. There may be occasions where the line manager is content to accept the request, but feels that
   the training need can be met in a different way to the request proposal. For example the training
   can be provided in-house rather than using an external training provider, or the line manager is
   aware of different courses or qualifications that better meet the training need of the staff member.
   If this is the case, it is necessary for you to discuss the member of staff’s request with them
   before reaching a final decision and confirming it in writing.

6. If the line manager is unsure or the request needs further exploration, the line manager should
   contact their HR Adviser to arrange a meeting to consider the request. Present at this meeting
   will be the line manager, the relevant HR Adviser, the member of staff and if required a colleague
   or representative of their choice (the colleague/representative can address the meeting, confer
   with the member of staff during it but may not answer questions independently of the staff
   member). This meeting must take place within 28 days of the initial request. If the colleague or
   representative of the member of staff is unable to attend then the individual should consider an
   alternative representative who can be present at the meeting.

7. The meeting is an opportunity to discuss the request and explore how it might be
   accommodated. Both the member of staff and the line manager must be flexible and be prepared
   to discuss alternatives.

8. Within 14 days of the meeting the member of staff concerned must be contacted in writing to
   confirm the outcome of the meeting. HR will prepare this letter in consultation with the manager
   and it will either:

      Agree to the original request – the letter must be dated and must include the details of the
      study/training e.g. the subject matter, where and when the training or study would take place,
      who would provide or supervise it and what qualification it would lead to (if any) and whether the
      time off for training will be paid, unpaid or they are required to work flexibly (refer to point 4).

      Refuse the request - A request can only be refused where there are clear business reasons
      (see below). A refusal letter must be dated and state the business ground(s) for refusal and also
      an explanation of why the business reasons apply in the circumstances. The right to appeal must
      also be explained.

      Request an extension - An extension may be requested where the matter remains unresolved,
      for example an alternative form of training/study has been suggested or further additional
      information is needed to give the request proper consideration. An agreement to extend the
      timescales must specify what period the extension relates to; specify the date on which the
      extension is to end and be dated. A copy of the agreement should be signed by the member of

Guidelines for Managers
Request for Training
Human Resources
April 2010
9. Managers must carefully consider requests for time off for training purposes (and where
   appropriate discuss the request with relevant team members). There will be some circumstances,
   however, where the request will not be possible. Acceptable reasons for refusing a request for
   training are outlined below:

                   it would not improve the member of staff’s effectiveness in the University
                   it would not improve the performance of the University
                   the burden of additional costs would be too great
                   it would have a detrimental effect on the ability to meet customer demand
                   unable to reorganise work among existing staff
                   unable to recruit additional staff
                   it would have a detrimental impact on quality
                   it would have a detrimental impact on performance
                   insufficiency of work during the periods the employee proposes to work
                   structural changes are planned during the proposed study/training period.

10. If the member of staff wishes to question the refusal, advice should be sought from HR to try and
    reach an acceptable compromise. If this is unsuccessful and a compromise cannot be reached
    they have the right to appeal and will be advised to follow the University’s Grievance Procedure
    (stage 3). The hearing will be heard within 14 days after receiving the notice of appeal wherever
    possible. In order to assist this process it is essential to keep clear and accurate notes of any
    discussions and investigations carried out.

11. It should be noted that under the Right to Request Time Off for Training Regulations an
    Employment Tribunal does not have the power to question the University’s business reasons for
    turning down a request, but it can examine the facts on which the business reason was based to
    see if they are factually correct. However, if a case is brought jointly with other legislation, e.g.
    the Sex Discrimination Act 1975, or other discrimination legislation, an Employment Tribunal may
    consider how the request was considered.

12. Members of staff must not be treated detrimentally or dismissed for a reason relating to their
    request for time off to train. In addition, it should be noted that rejecting a request for time to train
    could give rise to a discrimination claim.

13. The member of staff is entitled to make an application for to request time off for training/study
    purposes once in a 12 month period.

14. It should be noted that not all training requests have to be made using the time to train request
    procedure. Where good dialogue and training systems are in place these can be the route used
    for a member of staff to request training. For example requests can be made via Staff Infobase,
    through the PDPR process or career development discussions. If, however, there are any
    concerns regarding the request or further clarification is required then the procedure should be

Other Associated Policies, Procedures and Guidelines

               Guidelines for Managers dealing with the Right to Request Time off for Training
               Right to Request Time Off for Training – Guidelines for making an application
               Equal and Diversity Policy
               Grievance Procedure
               Staff Infobase
               PDPR Scheme
               LJMU Sponsorship Policy for CPD/HE Study and Vocational Qualifications.

Guidelines for Managers
Request for Training
Human Resources
April 2010

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