Risg Solutions offers professional customised health, safety, environmental, quality and fire management solutions. Our goal is to support your company in complying with your legal and moral duties, whilst also positively impacting your financial and business performance.
We cover Cardiff, Carmarthen, Swansea, Neath, Newport, Pembrokeshire, Wales & Borders..
If the COVID-19 pandemic achieved anything, it was to make employers and employees aware that people can successfully work from home without any loss of productivity. Many organisations now offer full-time home working or flexible working that sees employees work from home some days and from the office others.
If your organisation has made home working possible long term, you should have considered what you need to do as an employer to ensure you meet your duty of care and legal obligations.
Employers must ensure reasonable care for the health and safety of their employees and not expose them to unnecessary risks; this is the case whether employees are working from home or the office. Employers also must provide safe premises and a safe place to work; however, in the UK, this only covers premises owned and occupied by the employer and any third parties. Employees' homes do not fall into this category, as the employer does not own or occupy them.
Whilst it would be hugely impractical and unreasonable for employers to inspect every employee's individual safety when working from their own home office, they can still do certain things to ensure they fulfil their legal and moral obligations. For example, if an employee is disabled, neurodiverse or uses any tools or equipment that can be potentially dangerous. In that case, organisations should consider a home visit to these employees to assess the premises.
Employers may be required to carry out DSE assessments if employees use display screen equipment (DSE) such as laptops and computers at home. These DSE assessments can help employers see whether they need to provide any specific equipment to ensure employees are safe or whether their furniture or equipment is sufficient. If workers have been given specific training, they can carry out DSE self-assessments, ensuring any provided equipment is safe for use and that they can achieve a comfortable, sustainable posture whilst working with DSE. This training could be in the form of an instruction or instructional video presentation.
Employers should also guide their home-working employees on how to minimise the risk of slips and trips, ensure they know what to do in the case of an emergency, guidance on lone working, and other aspects of health and safety just as they would in an in-person work environment.
In addition to this, organisations in the UK must have insurance for liability for bodily injury or disease sustained by employees arising out of and during their employment.
If you are unsure about your obligations as an employer when team members are working from home and would like some help and guidance to ensure you are compliant, our team are here to help. We can work with you to ensure you fulfil your obligations to keep your remote working staff safe. Please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call at Swansea 01792 721 750 or Cardiff at 02920 099 450.