UK-based supermarket chain Tesco is offering new flexible working rights to its colleagues, making it the first major supermarket in the country to do so.

Tesco employees will now have the right to request a flexible working pattern from their first day instead of waiting for six months, as is currently necessary under existing employment law.

The supermarket, which has more than 300,000 colleagues, is granting the rights almost a year ahead of an expected change in the law from the government.

The UK government is likely to make similar changes over flexibility in the spring of next year.

Tesco UK people director James Goodman said: “We think giving people the right to start a conversation about flexible working from their first day, or even before they start work for Tesco, is the right thing to do to give colleagues the opportunity for a healthy work-life balance.

“We aim to create a positive culture at Tesco where managers will do as much as they can to facilitate these requests for flexibility.”

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData

The move is in line with Tesco’s commitment to offer a work-life balance for employees and enable them to give enough time to childcare.

Colleagues can also access the company’s expanded range of emotional well-being support through its Employee Assistance Programme.

Tesco Express Seaford, East Sussex store manager Mel Gutteridge said: “For me flexibility has allowed me to progress and work my way up to store manager while navigating family life. By working part-time, I can find the right balance between time spent at home with my family and time spent on my personal development and career progression.”

Last month, the supermarket chain reduced the prices of more than 500 household essentials, summer favourites and healthy foods.