EffectiveHRM have undertaken a number of hybrid working policy projects for our clients. In undertaking focus groups with member of our client’s teams, a number of themes emerge that an employer should consider, and not just think that if someone’s commute has shrunk from miles to metres that all is well.
Isolation and Loneliness
Working from home can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness, especially for those who are used to working in a social environment. Lack of social interaction can lead to depression and anxiety. Consider checking in with colleagues that much more than usual. One solution we came across was to work independently whilst having zoom/teams open. This is an attempt to recreate an office environment where spontaneous discussion could happen, whilst not disrupting the flow of work.
Working from home often involves sitting in front of a computer for long periods of time. This can lead to a sedentary lifestyle, which can have negative effects on physical health, including weight gain, back problems, and cardiovascular disease. Consider a routine that includes activity, be it a lunch-time stroll or using the commute time saved to undertake some gentle exercise.
Lack of Boundaries
When working from home, it can be difficult to set boundaries between work and personal life. This can lead to working long hours and feeling like you are always on the clock, which can cause burnout and stress. Depending on individual circumstances, working at home can create a more stressful domestic environments.
Home workspaces (including computer equipment, accessories and furniture) are often not designed for prolonged computer use. This can lead to physical discomfort, such as neck and back pain, and can also contribute to eye strain and headaches. The same level of Display Screen Equipment assessment should be used in a home working environment as it an office environment.
Consulting with employees is a fundamental legal requirement. It is important for employers and employees to address any technical or welfare issues and take steps to mitigate them when working from home. This may include providing ergonomic equipment, setting boundaries between work and personal life, encouraging social interaction, and promoting physical activity.
If you would like any further advice or guidance on Home Working, we’d love to help. Simply give us a call on 03300 414589, visit our contact us page or drop us an email at email@example.com to arrange a conversation.
DISCLAIMER: The article is provided for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal or other professional advice. While the information is considered to be true and correct at the date of publication, changes in circumstances may impact the accuracy and validity of the information. EffectiveHRM is not responsible for any errors or omissions, or for any action or decision taken as a result of using the guidance.