20 Examples of Alternative Work Schedules

Definitions. Alternate work schedules (AWS) is an umbrella term that refers to compressed work schedules and flexible work schedules. Compressed work schedule means a fixed work schedule (no flexible time bands) in which an employee can complete the biweekly work requirement in less than 10 working days.

In this episode of The Workplace podcast, employment law specialist Matthew Roberts and CalChamber Executive Vice President and General Counsel Erika Frank talk about different workweek schedules. Frank informs podcast listeners that there has been an increase in inquiries about alternative workweek schedules on the CalChamber Labor Law Helpline over the past month.

Alternate Work Schedules Featuring CSLEA Legal Counsel Andrea Perez

Why alternative work schedules can be beneficial

For those who require more flexibility than a regular schedule, an alternative work schedule may be advantageous. Each type of work schedule has advantages, and being aware of them can help you comprehend what employers are looking for when you apply for a position. Finding a job with a work schedule that gives you more freedom to manage your life how you want is advantageous because your work schedule affects how you schedule your time in your personal life.

Types of alternative work schedules

Here are 20 types of work schedules you can have:

1. Standard

When you must work during regular business hours, that is the standard work schedule. An illustration of a typical work schedule would be if your employer required you to work five days a week starting at 8 a.m. m. to 5 p. m. Although the start and end times may be different, a typical schedule will always call for working during business hours.

Example: A companys business hours are 8 a. m. to 5 p. m. , and you take a one-hour lunch break during those business hours.

2. Fixed full-time

Similar to a regular work schedule, a fixed full-time schedule is applicable to businesses that are open for longer than nine hours each day. If you have a set full-time schedule, you might have to start at 6 a.m. m. to 3 p. m. while a coworker is required to work from 2 p. m. to 11 p. m. Both employees work fixed full-time schedules at different times.

Example: A companys business hours are 5 a. m. to 1 a. m. , and you keep a regular full-time schedule starting at 4 p m. to 1 a. m.

3. Fixed part-time

The only difference between a fixed part-time schedule and a fixed full-time schedule is that the former requires less than eight hours per day and 40 hours per week of work. Your schedule remains the same each day and week. You might work from 8 a. m. to 1 p. m. at a part-time job.

Example: A companys business hours are 7 a. m. to 5 p. m. , and you work a part-time schedule from 8 a. m. to 1 p. m.

4. Job share

When two employees share one job, they each work a part-time schedule to cover the full-time hours of a typical employee. While some workers have full-time schedules, a job share arrangement would have two workers splitting a full-time schedule in half.

Example: Full-time employees work a schedule from 2 p. m. to 10 p. m. , and two staff members share a shift where one begins at 2 p m. to 6 p. m. and the other works from 6 p. m. to 10 p. m.

5. Unpredictable

Any work schedule that varies every day or week is considered unpredictable. One day, you might work four hours, and the next, eight. You might work two days one week and five the following.

Example: You work 10 a. m. to 6 p. m. Your employer adjusts your schedule to 7 a.m. after one week. m. to 3 p. m. the next week. By the middle of the second week, your schedule has once more changed to 5 a. m. to 1 p. m.

6. Flextime

A flexible schedule allows an employee to select the remaining hours they work while requiring them to work a portion of their hours during a specific time. You might be required to work from 9 a. m. to 12 p. m. and have the option to choose your remaining five hours between 6 a m. and 6 p. m.

Example: Your required hours are 2 p. m. to 5 p. m. One day you decide to work from 8 a. m. to 5 p. m. the following day, you decide to work starting at 2 p.m. to have dinner with your family. m. to 11 p. m. because you have a dentists appointment in the morning.

7. Compressed workweek

Employees who have a compressed workweek can complete their full-time duties in fewer days. You might work four days a week for 10 hours a day instead of working full-time for six days a week for seven hours a day.

Example: You work a 40-hour work week, starting at 6 a.m., Monday through Thursday. m. to 5 p. m. with one-hour lunches.

8. Compressed workday

When you work fewer hours in a day, this is known as a compressed workday schedule. In that most or all employees in a company work the same compressed schedule, it is comparable to a part-time schedule.

Example: You and all your coworkers work from 7 a. m. to 1 p. m. to complete all of the required tasks each day.

9. Shift work

Any schedule that is a part of a regular shift rotation is referred to as shift work. Every business that is open 24 hours a day and operates for more than 10 hours a day typically uses shift workers. There may be two or more shifts in a company on any given day.

Example: At a 24-hour business, one employee starts at six in the morning. m. to 3 p. m. , another employee works from 2 p. m. to 11 p. m. , and you work from 10 p. m. to 7 a. m. Every employee takes a one-hour break, which overlaps with the start of the following employee’s shift.

10. Rotating shift

Employees work different shifts each day or each week as the hours rotate among them in rotating shifts, which can be daily or weekly rotations. Every employee on a rotating shift will perform the same rotation at various times.

Example: You work 6 a. m. to 3 p. m. the first week, 10 p. m. to 7 p. m. the second week, and 2 p. m. to 11 p. m. the third week.

11. Split shift

An employee who works two shorter shifts per day with a longer break is said to be on a split shift schedule. An employee might work from 7 a. m. to 11 a. m. and depart until their following shift at 5 p m. to 9 p. m.

Example: You work a three-hour lunch shift as a food delivery driver starting at 11 a. m. to 2 p. m. and a five-hour dinner shift from 6 p. m. to 11 p. m.

12. On-call

When an employee has an on-call schedule, they must be available to work whenever the company is open on a particular day. On one day of the week, you might be required to work as many hours as necessary because you will be on call.

Example: You are on an on-call shift from 6 a. m. to 10 p. m. , and your employer calls at 1 p. m. to say you are required to work from 2 p. m. to 10 p. m. that day.

13. Overtime

Employees who have overtime schedules must put in more time than the typical 40 or 8 hours per week. You might put in 10 hours a day or 60 a week. Depending on the employer, working overtime frequently results in higher pay.

Example: You and your friend both work overtime schedules. While you work seven days a week for seven hours, your friend only works three days a week for 12 hours. While you take advantage of weekly overtime, your friend takes advantage of daily overtime.

14. No schedule

An employer who doesn’t have a schedule allows workers to put in as much time as necessary to finish their projects. If an employee completes their tasks in four instead of eight hours, their day will be over. No-schedule policies are frequently found in jobs where the amount of work each day is unpredictable.

Example: With a start time of 4 a.m., you unload trucks at a warehouse in the morning. m. The number of hours needed for each day varies depending on how much inventory each truck can hold. One day you work from 4 to 7 a. m. , while another day you work from 4 a. m. to 12 p. m.

15. Results-only work environment

Employees who produce the desired results can work as little as they want in a results-only workplace. ROWE schedules are frequently seen in salaried positions that value productivity over idle time.

You receive your annual salary in bimonthly installments and can choose to work two or eight hours per day, seven days a week, as long as you meet your employer’s quota or requirements.

16. Freelance

The freelancer or contract employee makes all decisions regarding their own schedule. The freelancer can work whenever they want for as long as they want, provided the work is finished by the deadline.

Example: You are contracted on Oct. By November 15, 15 must produce 30 designs for a marketing campaign. 15. You decide the days and times you will work, and you must submit your finished designs by November 15 deadline.

17. Seasonal

Any work schedule that is restricted to a certain season or time of the year is referred to as a seasonal schedule. Some businesses that operate year-round use seasonal schedules to hire more staff when necessary during peak seasons. Other businesses that are only open for a brief period of time each year only employ seasonal workers.

You work a full-time or part-time shift in November and December to make up for the extra customers that the grocery store anticipates during those months. As an alternative, you can install Christmas lights for a business year-round, which is only from November to January each year.

18. Remote work

A remote work schedule is any time an employee works outside of the office. Some businesses might give employees the option to work remotely, while others might insist on it as a full-time requirement.

Example: You perform all of your daily tasks from home as a member of a company’s phone support staff.

19. Telecommuting

A telecommuting schedule gives workers the option to work remotely some or all of the time, but it also mandates that they come into the office for a set period of time each week or month. When working remotely, you might do the majority of your work at home and only visit the office when there is a client or team meeting.

Using your company’s conference room for client meetings while working from home to call potential clients

20. Customized

A customized schedule allows the employee to choose their schedule. Employees may have complete control over their schedules, or they may be subject to obligations like working a minimum number of hours or on certain days.

An organization, for instance, has numerous contracted workers who can decide to work whenever shifts are available. The business anticipates you working seven hours between 8 a.m. m. and 8 p. m. , so you decide to work from 10 a. m. to 5 p. m.


Which is an example of an alternative work schedule?

There are many possibilities in alternative work schedules. Part-time, flextime, compressed workweeks, telecommuting, and job sharing are examples of common types. Part-time workers regularly work less than a full-time schedule.

What is alternative schedule?

Alternative Schedule An alternative work schedule is a scheduling arrangement that allows an employee’s starting and ending times to differ from their core hours but leaves their weekly total of hours worked untouched.

What are the 4 types of work scheduling?

4 Work Schedules for Remote and Flexible Jobs
  1. Full-Time. Despite the fact that 40 or more hours are typically associated with full-time employment, the definition can vary by employer and even by governmental entity.
  2. Part-Time. …
  3. Flexible Schedule. …
  4. Alternative Schedule.

What is the 5 4 9 work schedule?

There are numerous ways a compressed schedule can function. The two most typical are 5-4/9, which requires you to work 8 9-hour days and 1 8-hour day during the pay period in exchange for an additional day off. 4-10, which entails working four 10-hour days during each pay period while also adding an extra day to each week.

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