Attitude to working hours Attitude to working hours
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  1. #1

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    Default Attitude to working hours

    New to contracting. One thing I notice is that working hours rarely get discussed in interview. To be honest, not sure if I should in case it puts client off.

    Got chance of a few contracts but one is in the city centre. Also, got young kids at home, so it'd be nice to be home before they're in bed. Traffic/parking is really bad in the city, so if I was forced to do 9-5 it'd be a nightmare and I'd end up stuck in traffic and getting home late.

    So, assuming I'd rather work 8am start what to do? Discuss with client before taking the gig? Just turn up and after a few days do this and hope no-one says anything? Turn up and then discuss with client?

    I guess some of you would say that client cant 'control' you (IR35 etc) and you should be able to come and go as you please (within reason).

    In the few contracts I've had, its been ok. No-one really notices. Maybe its just me being a bit paranoid that if I do 8-4 then someone will moan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by paulinefowlersgrowler View Post
    New to contracting. One thing I notice is that working hours rarely get discussed in interview. To be honest, not sure if I should in case it puts client off.

    Got chance of a few contracts but one is in the city centre. Also, got young kids at home, so it'd be nice to be home before they're in bed. Traffic/parking is really bad in the city, so if I was forced to do 9-5 it'd be a nightmare and I'd end up stuck in traffic and getting home late.

    So, assuming I'd rather work 8am start what to do? Discuss with client before taking the gig? Just turn up and after a few days do this and hope no-one says anything? Turn up and then discuss with client?

    I guess some of you would say that client cant 'control' you (IR35 etc) and you should be able to come and go as you please (within reason).

    In the few contracts I've had, its been ok. No-one really notices. Maybe its just me being a bit paranoid that if I do 8-4 then someone will moan.
    Don't worry about working hours - that's permies concern. Rock up when it suits you. So long as you deliver nobody will moan.
    Last edited by oscarose; 27th February 2014 at 11:03.
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  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by paulinefowlersgrowler View Post
    In the few contracts I've had, its been ok. No-one really notices. Maybe its just me being a bit paranoid that if I do 8-4 then someone will moan.
    This really depends on the client.

    In one bank there was a manager who sent around an email moaning at everyone because some people were coming in a few minutes late in the morning (literally less than 10 minutes). He also did not like people (even permies) working late or through lunch. He wanted everyone to be there whilst the customers were working (basically 9-5.30 Mon to Fri) and at no other times because he was worried about burnout.

    In a large bank in London everything was done on swipe cards and you needed to do at least 4 hours a day and 40 hours a week. Everything else was up to you.

    Current client - as long as the work is done no one seem to care what hours you work.

    Easiest thing is to ask the man in charge and see what he says.
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    Quote Originally Posted by paulinefowlersgrowler View Post
    New to contracting. One thing I notice is that working hours rarely get discussed in interview. To be honest, not sure if I should in case it puts client off.

    Got chance of a few contracts but one is in the city centre. Also, got young kids at home, so it'd be nice to be home before they're in bed. Traffic/parking is really bad in the city, so if I was forced to do 9-5 it'd be a nightmare and I'd end up stuck in traffic and getting home late.

    So, assuming I'd rather work 8am start what to do? Discuss with client before taking the gig? Just turn up and after a few days do this and hope no-one says anything? Turn up and then discuss with client?

    I guess some of you would say that client cant 'control' you (IR35 etc) and you should be able to come and go as you please (within reason).

    In the few contracts I've had, its been ok. No-one really notices. Maybe its just me being a bit paranoid that if I do 8-4 then someone will moan.
    Why not ask the question in the interview? Tell me about your office/organisation's working culture & practices. From there you can get an idea on what is expected and get agreements on your hours working location agreed.

  5. #5

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    I agree with oscarose, but just to add, I have in the past explained my approach to working at the interview. I emphasised that I'm flexible, and that this also extends to my working hours. I can't remember if the conversation lent itself to talking specifics, e.g. "I'm an 8-4 man", but I certainly have (possibly with the same client) sent a working arrangements email which detailed any holiday I have during the contract period (I wasn't asked prior, and it was only four days), working times, contact details, etc.

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    I always ask when I'm at the interview and on top of that I also tell them that on a Friday I leave at 2:30pm to commute back to Wales and ask if they think that will be a problem. No one has found it problematic and I tend to work what hours I want but I'm always upfront with it so I think this helps.
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    My current agency sent through a bunch of stuff about me having to work 7.5 hours with an enforced hour lunch break etc. In reality, should I simply deal with those on site and work accordingly?

    (NB: I have no issue putting the hours in, I'm just used to a 30 minute lunch at the most)

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    Quote Originally Posted by vwdan View Post
    My current agency sent through a bunch of stuff about me having to work 7.5 hours with an enforced hour lunch break etc. In reality, should I simply deal with those on site and work accordingly?

    (NB: I have no issue putting the hours in, I'm just used to a 30 minute lunch at the most)
    Yeah I would to be fair, agency contracts are always the same.
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  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Spartan View Post
    I always ask when I'm at the interview and on top of that I also tell them that on a Friday I leave at 2:30pm to commute back to Wales and ask if they think that will be a problem. No one has found it problematic and I tend to work what hours I want but I'm always upfront with it so I think this helps.
    +1 (apart from going to Wales)

    I explain that they won't see me early on a Monday if I'm travelling, or on a Friday afternoon. I explain that they'll get their money's worth in between then, though.

    I've only had one client question it, and that was for a short term when they wanted the client to see bodies between 9 and 5 every day. I still did my usual thing, after some negotiation with the PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by MaryPoppins View Post
    I hadn't really understood this 'pwned' expression until I read DirtyDog's post.

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    Same as DD

    I worked at gigs where they have core hours and have to have 1 hour lunch breaks etc but they're permies so I don't see the same rules as applying and I explain this to the client and I often tell them you'll probably get more time out of me than is stated in the contract if you're flexible.

    Current contract states 37.5hrs a week, 7.5hrs a day some days I do more others I do less though I usually do tend to end up over the 37.5hrs a week it doesn't bother me. As for lunch breaks somedays I take 30 mins other days two hours but the client has no problem and they've just renewed my services for another 3 months
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