Appraisal of the Right to Request Time to Train Regulations

Research report

 | Department for Education | Oct 2017

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This report presents the findings of a mixed-method appraisal of the functioning of the Right to Request Time to Train, as of March 2015. The report was produced by IES on behalf of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS).

The Right to Request Time to Train policy came into effect in 2010 and gives employees of businesses of more than 250 employees the right to submit formal requests to their employers for time off for study or training relevant to their performance in the workplace. Employers are required to consider these requests and respond in writing within certain time limits (currently 28 days). Employers can refuse requests for a number of recognised business reasons.

The research aimed to inform the government's decision-making about the future of the Right to Request Time to Train. This report therefore aims to contribute to the debate around whether to extend the Right to employees of small- and medium-sized businesses.

The report includes findings on levels of awareness of the Right, according to size, sector and general skills and training cultures within organisations; the levels of awareness amongst union officials; and disparities between awareness at organisational level and awareness amongst employees and at different line management levels. Findings also include the perceived impact on investment in training and the potential negative effects of the Right.