The shift to remote working during the pandemic was thrust upon employers and employees alike without much pre-planning but many people enjoyed this new way of working and now that things are returning to normal not everyone is keen to get back to the office.
Employers wishing to allow hybrid working need to ensure that the rules are laid out clearly with detailed policies to set expectations on both sides. Employers should be very clear about issues such as how many days will be worked from home and how many in the office, will the home days be compulsory or is there an option to come into the office if there is a need. If an employee works more days in the office one week, do they get home days back the next week to compensate and vice versa.
A range of aspects need to be considered such as:
- reviewing existing HR policies, for example homeworking or flexible working policies, and introducing new ones, such as a hybrid/agile working policy
- organising how workers will be managed and supervised, while ensuring no differential treatment
- incorporating new contractual clauses into employment contracts
- checking whether any employer’s liability insurance policies need updating
- identifying how confidential company, employee and client information will be kept secure, and
- identifying any employee tax implications, such as expenses incurred in working at home or for computer equipment provided.
This provides summary information and comment on the subject areas covered. Where employment tribunal and appellate court cases are reported, the information does not set out all of the facts, the legal arguments presented and the judgments made in every aspect of the case. Employment law is subject to constant change either by statute or by interpretation by the courts. While every care has been taken in compiling this information, we cannot be held responsible for any errors or omissions. Specialist legal advice must be taken on any legal issues that may arise before embarking upon any formal course of action.