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AIB Bank and IBOA
A Partnership Approach to Family Friendly Working Arrangements


  • Background and Rationale for Family Friendly Working arrangements

   AIB Bank and the Trade Union representing staff, the Irish Bank Officials' Association have adopted a partnership approach to family friendly working arrangements. They have achieved the widespread establishment of a number of options for staff by using the mechanism of a Joint Working Party to agree and review family friendly initiatives.

   AIB Bank recognises that staff may require flexibility in their work patterns at certain times in their career when balancing varying priorities, between their personal and working lives. Choices 2000 has been developed as AIB's flexible working policy for the new millennium which seeks as far as possible to meet these needs.

  • Policies implemented

   The Choices 2000 policy is a progression of a previous flexible working programme originally introduced within the Republic of Ireland in 1996. The IBOA has been closely involved in identifying the needs of its membership and reaching agreement with the Bank on the various specific options open to staff whilst taking into account the organisation's resourcing requirements.

   AIB Bank was recognised for its progressive policies in 1996 by the IPD, partly as a result of the large number of staff who have been accommodated under the family friendly working arrangements.

   Choices 2000 provides a number of options to permanent staff who wish to work reduced hours or to avail of leave of absence on a full-time basis.

  • Job Sharing

This involves two staff members sharing one full-time post and equally dividing the responsibilities, duties and hours of work.

  • Personalised Hours

   Personalised Hours apply where staff wish to vary their contracted working hours from the existing norm of 36.25 hours per week to any combination of hours between 14.5 hours and 31.25 hours per week. This option has proved to be of significant interest to staff who wish to vary their working hours to suit their own needs.

  • Special Short-term Break

   A Special Short-term Break is a leave of absence from three months to one year and is available to staff in the following situations:

  • Short-term Responsibility Break - available to staff who have a need to spend time with their family at particular times e.g. illness, when children are starting school.

  • Caring Leave Break - for staff with personal caring responsibility who need to take time off to care for elderly , sick or disabled relatives.

  • Family Short-term Break - available to staff who wish to spend extended periods of time with their families.

  • Career Break - A Career Break is a continuous leave of absence for a minimum period of 6 months and a maximum period of 5 years. The standard length of a career break will be 3 years at any one time.

   In addition to the Choices 2000 policy, AIB Bank has a separate and distinct policy on Maternity Leave which includes provision for enhanced maternity leave of up to 28 weeks and also has a policy on Parental Leave.

   AIB Bank and the IBOA are committed to continue to review and develop these initiatives within a framework of an evolving partnership approach to industrial relations.