Employees with side hustles

Posted 06/11/2019 : By: Kathryn Pratt

A study by CV Library found that 60% of those who take on other working opportunities outside of their primary position do so to top up their income, with other reasons such as job security, exploring a new challenge or pursuing a hobby also turning people to the growing trend.

So, what is a side hustle?

A side hustle is not the same as a part-time job. A part-time job usually entails the employer calling most of the shots such as working hours and pay, whereas, a side hustle or side gig allows individuals the freedom to decide how much they want to work and earn.

Side hustles come in all shapes and sizes and likely depend on the persons motive for taking on other work. From driving for Uber or delivering food to selling beauty products for marketing companies on social media. Many people may work for several hours during the evening after working a 9am-5pm day at their main employment, while others may use their time on their commute to work or lunch break to carry out their business on their smartphones.

What you should consider

A flexible approach to employees taking on side hustles is recommended as it helps to ensure that the priorities and needs of your employees are met. Some may need to save for a special occasion, and others may have debts that they need a little extra income to pay off. 

A good balance would be to consider including an express term in the contract which prohibits any side hustle or business venture which affect the employee’s ability to devote their full attention to their work during work hours. In addition, a clause to state that before an employee takes on any additional work it must be approved by the company will allow you to evaluate what the employee intends to do and time to consider any measures that may need to be put in place to ensure the business is protected.

Allowing employees the opportunity to take on side gigs will also help in terms of recruitment and retention. If a contract states that extra work such as side gigs are not permitted, you may just miss out on the perfect candidate because accepting the offer would mean they would not be able to continue their photography business. Similarly, an existing employee wanting to try something new might decide to look for other full-time employment if the company policy doesn’t have a flexible approach to other work or interests.

Health and wellbeing

Naturally, some employers may have concerns about the health and wellbeing of their employees where a side gig commits them to additional hours on top of a full-time position. A survey by Hiscox found the average side hustle adds an extra 6-15 hours per week. Where employees are working themselves to the point of exhaustion, this can have a negative impact on their health and wellbeing. In such cases, check-ins with employees may help to reduce any associated stress. Advice with regards to how employees with side hustles manage their time could also be helpful.

Performance 

If managers notice a drop in productivity or absence levels increase, they should try to solve the issue informally by having a conversation with the employee. Open conversations about outside activities will help you to establish whether or not there are any changes that could be made to the employee’s main employment such as flexible working or salary adjustment. If performance levels do not improve, managers may have to evoke the company’s capability procedure.

Working Time Regulations

The Working Time Regulations do not apply in relation to work where the duration of the time is not measured or can be determined by the worker themselves.

Where employees take on part-time jobs (roles where the employer stipulates working hours and pay) in addition to their primary employment, the Working Time Regulations do apply, and the responsibility remains with the employer to take all reasonable steps to protect the health and safety of employees by ensuring that they do not work too many hours and are receiving the correct amount of breaks.

If you would like to discuss this in more detail or need assistance developing a side gig policy, please get in touch with one of our HR Consultants today.

Source of statistics: https://www.risesmart.com/blog/are-employee-side-hustles-impacting-workplace-productivity

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