I'm an 18 year old apprentice software developer and I'm really active in some development communities and networking with developers in general.

I've looked at some remote intern work which would be good experience for me and is part-time, but my employment contract says I can't be employed by anyone else both paid/unpaid. They seemed quite open to me possibly working with them.

I was wondering how successful I'm likely to be in requesting the ability to have this maybe changed to 'not employed by anyone with conflicting interests with the company' or something.

I'm young so my communication with authority in the workplace isn't that good (it's actually quite awkward).

How do I ask without seeming like my interests are elsewhere from the company when actually I am just young, passionate about my career and getting involved with people and companies to work on projects. I feel a term like that limits my potential but I can see why it was put there.

Edit: I spoke to my boss and mentioned things like volunteering ect. He is going to change the clause to allow me to do un-paid work as long as it doesn't conflict with the business interests. I am happy with that.

  • Is your apprentice role full or part time? Apr 18, 2018 at 9:16
  • @PhilipKendall Full-time, with a degree on top (degree apprenticeship). I don't go out partying often or care for things like that, I am very focused on the tech industry and my career and thus still want to put in the extra hours to something useful that furthers my career.
    – user86050
    Apr 18, 2018 at 9:18
  • @FelipeWarrener-Iglesias id concentrate on your degree and your existing apprenticeship Apr 18, 2018 at 9:24

1 Answer 1


The ideal time to discuss this would be during contract negotiations. If you already signed the contract, you will have to follow it. You will most likely be able to ask your employer for permission to work in different places. Permission for a single 'job'.

The easiest way to achieve this, is to phrase it as a benefit to your employer. At worst, it shouldn't cost them anything.

An example:

I had the same or a similar clause in my first offer at the company I currently work for, but I requested it to be removed. I volunteer at festivals in my weekends in summer. Per the original contract, that wouldn't be allowed. I explained all the advantages of this to my employer and that it wouldn't have any disadvantages to the company. I would for example learn many soft skills. My employeer agreed to change the clause for my contract.

  • So your contract was changed to allowing other employment or you have to disclose each bit of work you want to do and it be approved by your employer?
    – user86050
    Apr 18, 2018 at 9:55
  • @FelipeWarrener-Iglesias I’m only restricted in my ability to work for competitors.
    – Belle
    Apr 18, 2018 at 9:59
  • are contract negotiations an annual thing?
    – user86050
    Apr 18, 2018 at 10:20
  • 1
    @FelipeWarrener-Iglesias no, you do that before you start working there, usually.
    – Belle
    Apr 18, 2018 at 11:01

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