The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) has backed the government’s decision not to put flexible working extension plans on hold.

It was thought the extension of the right to request flexible working could be postponed due to the current financial crisis.

However, it was not mentioned in the Queen’s speech and the government confirmed the plans will go ahead in April as originally planned.

Jackie Orme, chief executive of CIPD, said evidence shows flexible working is good for employers and employees alike. She added part-time and flexible workers are happier and more engaged with their work.

"Therefore they are more likely to perform better and be more productive, which just as important in a downturn as in the good times – if not more so," she said.

It was recently announced by the government that new legislation will mean 25 million employees will benefit from a right to request time at work to undertake training.