Introduction to this document

Shift swap request form

Where employees are shift workers, they may sometimes request to swap shifts with each other. Use our form to formalise your process for agreeing to this.

Shift workers

Shift workers tend not to have normal working hours. Instead, they work hours according to a shift rota, and these shifts will often vary, or rotate, from day to day or week to week. Where an employee’s working hours or days may be variable, you must include details of how they vary, or how that variation is to be determined, in their written statement of employment particulars – see our Shift Work Clause.

Shift swaps

From time to time, shift workers may want or need to swap a shift with another member of staff. Rather than just allowing staff to sort this out informally between themselves, it’s better to have a formalised shift swap system – that way, you know who’s due to work on each shift and your shift rota isn’t at risk of breaking down. Our shift work clause envisages that the employee will submit a request to swap a shift to their line manager, but only once another employee in their department has agreed to swap with them. Our Shift Swap Request Form makes this request process easier.

Form contents

Our form requires the employee to insert their name and department, the details of the employee who’s agreed to swap with them and the dates and times of the two shifts that are being requested to be swapped, and then to sign and return it to their line manager. It also includes a declaration to the effect that the other employee has expressly agreed to do the swap and it reminds the requesting employee that they mustn’t proceed with the swap until their manager has formally authorised their request. You’re not obliged to agree to a shift swap but, if you do, you still need to ensure compliance with the provisions in the Working Time Regulations 1998 regarding daily and weekly rest periods (but these can be excluded in relation to shift workers in certain defined circumstances).