Blog post

Ireland Embraces Flexibility – New Rights to Remote and Flexible Working

On 7th March 2024, Ireland’s employment landscape saw a significant shift as Ministers Simon Coveney and Roderic O’Gorman introduced the right for employees to request remote and flexible working arrangements. This pivotal development is set to transform the work-life balance in Ireland, especially benefiting parents and carers.


Key Points for HR Professionals

Remote and Flexible Working Rights

Employees in Ireland now can apply for remote working, with special considerations for parents and carers to access flexible working hours.

Launch of a Detailed Code of Practice

A thorough Code of Practice has been issued to aid in the application of these new rights.

Legislative Background

These changes are supported by the Work-Life Balance and Miscellaneous Provisions Act of 2023, aligning with the goals of the EU Work-Life Balance Directive.

Man working in a cafe

Exploring the Code of Practice

The Workplace Relations Commission (WRC), acting on a request from the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, crafted the Code of Practice on Flexible and Remote Working Rights. This guideline was established under the Workplace Relations Act 2015, drawing insights from trade unions, employer groups, and the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission.

The Code aims to provide clear instructions for both employers and employees on how to adhere to the new provisions under the Work-Life Balance and Miscellaneous Provisions Act of 2023. It outlines the procedures for requesting remote working and flexible working for caregiving, aligning with the updated Parental Act provisions.

The significance of this Code extends to legal proceedings, where it can be used as evidence, ensuring that the processes it advocates are followed in court or at employment adjudication forums.

You can download the code of practice here

Minister Coveney highlighted the evolution towards remote working as a norm post-pandemic, noting the benefits of decreased commuting and more family time. Minister O’Gorman underlined the comprehensive range of benefits introduced under the new Act, showcasing the government’s commitment to enhancing work-life balance.

With these new rights in place, Ireland is taking a significant step towards a more flexible and inclusive workplace environment. HR professionals play a crucial role in guiding their organisations through this change, embedding these modern working practices to promote a supportive and adaptable work culture.

Ireland Embraces Flexibility – New Rights to Remote and Flexible Working was last modified: March 11th, 2024 by Beatriz Araujo

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