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How employers can navigate the potential issues of hybrid working

Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton

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.

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