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Staff working two settings?


cvdbout
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Hi everyone,

 

We've had a request from our supervisor to work at another setting during school holidays - our policy says they need to seek written approval and if its a conflict it may be refused. Does anyone have experience with this? How do you decide if it is a conflict?

 

Currently we do not allow staff to babysit for any of our parents in their free time as our feeling is if something happens during that time it may reflect badly on us, being the primary employer - is this a similar scenario?

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Are you both privately owned settings? Could be seen as conflict of business interests? You would want to believe that this person would be reliable in terms of their confidentiality, for both settings. I think you would probably need to quite sure of your reasons for refusal, if you decide to go down that route.

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Conflicts can happen eg if either settings asks for swaps or extra hours etc and they conflict with the 'other' job. Or if their health and well being suffers as a result,making them unable to carry out their duties, but you wont know that until it happens.

But if you have contracted hours and the other job is holiday and yours is term time I can't see an issue. I work with a number of settings where staff have 3 jobs and I've held two many times over the years.

I can't see any reas on to refuse from what you have said.

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Reading this with interest - I have a member of staff who needs extra hours which I cannot offer. I am flattered that she does not want to leave us but agree it has the potential to cause lots of issues. I don't feel I can refuse as she needs the money to live but being selfish it gives me no flexibility - the last two weeks I have had to cover for staff sickness as no other staff could cover and I am now fighting through the back log of paperwork. Looking forward I know I will need her to work more hours in the summer term which she may not be able to do if she has another job but I certainly don't want to have to employ someone else.

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I've worked in more than one setting at the same time and I'm struggling to think of any conflicts. Even when a mother removed a child from the nursery where I was covering for a senior practitioner and placed him at my childminding business, it was dealt with maturely and sensibly by all concerned and caused no conflict or bad feeling.

As long as the hours the supervisor is contracted to work for you are not impinged on by the other job and it doesn't impact on her in any way, e.g. being tired, there doesn't seem to be any reason for concern.

Confidentiality is required outside the setting whether someone is in another job or just socialising.

As hopeytg says, it wouldn't be reasonable to prevent someone from working on days they aren't contracted to you so you have ready sick leave cover or staff available to cover increasing numbers.

 

I can't think what is likely to happen in another setting (or babysitting for that matter) that is likely to reflect on your setting. If this person is responsible and professional, they could be expected to act in a similar way in another setting.

 

If the opening times of the settings could possibly clash, you need to establish which setting would take priority. That would, presumably, be yours within reason and this could be an assurance you request in writing in advance. Other than that, I don't think you have any reason to refuse.

 

If you do refuse, she may decide to solve her income issues by looking for employment in a setting that works through term time and the holidays and then you will have lost her altogether.


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Well this once again highlights the difficulty of employing staff and being able to offer them:

a) enough hours to earn a 'living wage' and

b) being able to afford to pay 'a decent enough wage that they do not have to look elsewhere!

 

For so long we have relied on staff that are content to be 'flexible' ie waiting for hours to increase over the school year. It's never been fair and quite honestly good staff deserve much better. Not sure small setting early years people will ever have the security other folk may have in their employment.

As far as 'conflict of interest' goes, I can see that there may be a slight risk of confidentialiaty eg other business asking questions about your business but that depends on the professionalism of all concerned.

 

Just another thing we have to accept.

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Thank you everyone for your replies - its helped clarify what would constitute a conflict, and yes confidentiality may be a concern but as everyone rightly pointed out it is expected of this person anyway however sharing business practices and information I don't think would occur to them so we will gently remind them of their obligation in all confidentiality aspects - luckily we are a small village and know the staff at the other setting so don't feel any huge risk of them taking action with business information but it would still be a concern should it happen.

 

In case this helps anyone in future, we are a sessional term time only pre-school.

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As an individual running my own business I regularly work in different settings. I have set days in one and floating days which I fill elsewhere. As long as I know in advance when and where I am needed then there has so far not been any issues. It can be an absolute plus as despite all following the EYFS, practice does vary and it really does broaden ideas etc. It is so difficult managing a setting being unable to offer full time hours for all staff and needing the flexibility to increase and decrease where necessary! Good staff can be hard to come by and I do think that as long as you have clear policies in place relating to confidentiality and are organised with rotas it can work to everyone's advantage.

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