Homeworking allows employees and the self-employed to work remotely from their main place of work on a full- or part-time basis and to set up a dedicated full-time workspace at their home.
However, homeworking requires management and coordination to ensure employees are not put at risk from longer-term health and safety hazards or other issues that can emerge.
Duties of employers
Responsibility for health and safety at work rests with the employer whether or not that work is being done at the employee’s home.
Employers need to consult with their employees to assure themselves that:
- the employee is aware of any specific risks regarding working from home;
- the work activity and the workspace are suitable;
- they provide suitable equipment to enable the work to be done;
- there is a pre-arranged means of contact.
This assessment will look at the equipment, software, ventilation, lighting levels, access & egress, ergonomics, good housekeeping, space requirements, noise, eye tests, electrical cables/electricity, manual handling, stress due to VDU work and furniture. There are minimum requirements and standards required which cover all these areas.
This assessment will also evaluate the employee’s routine, positioning and seating in relation to their VDU and training levels provide to staff.