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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 49816
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Hi. Im on a assistant manager on a 38 hour contract in a Tesco

Customer Question

Hi. I'm on a assistant manager on a 38 hour contract in a Tesco express store but three times over the last 2 months i have been scheduled to do 6 days out of seven. (My job descriptions states that I "work a 5/7 rota" ). I haven't been asked, the rota has just been put up or I've been told to do it. When i asked the boss he says its "needs of the business" and it is really stressing me out. I have made it clear I am happy to start early or stay late if I need to but I want my two days off. I understand if I can't get my job role done I may need to work extra but I am being scheduled to cover staff roles when they are on holiday. I am not getting paid or even offered time in lieu for these days either. The reason he needs me to work is because our company has changed the staff contracts (for the second time in 12 months) leaving us very short handed (with no replacements being hired). We have increased our revenue but had our resources cut. I have worked in the same store for over 2 years and we have never had to work on such a small staff budget. I work extremely hard when I'm there (and my boss would agree with that), I don't ever take my full break allowance and yet I get treated like this.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is Ben and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. What are your specific queries about this?

Please note I am mobile at present so may not be able to reply immediately but will do so ASAP

JACUSTOMER-n425dfkc- : How can I challenge this with my boss to say it is not "needs of the business" as I feel it isn',
JACUSTOMER-n425dfkc- : I would much rather deal with it in store but am starting to feel like I need to contact someone outside of the store
JACUSTOMER-n425dfkc- : Hello. I have got my contract and it reads as follow in regards to working hours -"you will be required to work a minimum of 36.00 hours per week plus any additional hours that may be reasonably required for you to fulfil your duties properly". Does this mean that I can refuse to work the 6th day as it is not to "fulfil my duties??
Ben Jones :

Apologies for the delay in responding for some reason the system had not notified me that you were waiting for my response and I have only just seen it by accident.

Your employer should adhere to the terms of your contract and if it says that you are working on a 5/7 rotas then you can expect them to honour that. There could be a clause in the contract which may say you would be asked to work such additional hours that your employer may need you to, so it is also important that you check for that. If such a clause exists then it is possible to be asked to work additional hours to meet the needs of the business but this should not be taken advantage of and the employer needs to act in a fair manner. In any event there would be an implied contractual term in every employment relationship which requires the employer to treat its employees with a degree of trust and confidence, which basically means that you need to be treated fairly and not taken advantage of. So if the employer asks you to do additional hours on an occasional basis only and such a clause exists, then they could do it and you would be expected to help out as required (subject to negotiating the days you would be working and being given adequate notice).

However, if no such clause exists then the employer cannot ask you to work these extra hours and they would be acting in breach of the contract you have with them. You would then be able to refuse to do the hours that are asked of you in addition of he contracted ones and if necessary you may also pursue this through the employer’s formal grievance procedure. The final option, but only if absolutely necessary, is to resign and claim constructive dismissal in the employment tribunal.

Hope this clarifies your position? If you could please let me know that would be great, thank you

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
Hello Norman, could you please let me know if I have answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this – this is needed so I can either keep the question open or close it if no further advice is required? Thank you