Homeworking Policy

General Statement

The organisation is committed to ensuring the health, safety and welfare of its homeworkers and those affected by homeworking as far as is reasonably practicable. A homeworker is any employee who works at home or in other premises of their choice on behalf of the organisation.

Homeworkers are subject to the same health and safety requirements as workers based on company premises and must be managed accordingly.

All homeworking activities will be considered and assessed for risk. Where there is little or no risk to the homeworker or others in the home environment no further action will be taken. If a risk assessment indicates the need for action, the organisation is committed to putting in place appropriate controls to reduce the risk as far as is reasonably practicable. Homeworkers are covered by existing health and safety law in the same way as any other worker within the organisation.

The implementation of this policy requires the total co-operation of all members of management and staff. There will be full consultation with employee representatives through existing channels of communication.

The person responsible for implementing this policy is ____________.

Arrangements for Securing the Health and Safety of Workers

The organisation will, in consultation with homeworkers and their representatives:

  1. provide information, instruction, training and supervision
  2. assess all significant risks, including display screen equipment if used
  3. make adequate arrangements for putting in place control measures and for managing control measures
  4. ensure that manual handling loads are appropriate and that appropriate lifting aids and/or training are provided where it is not possible to avoid the risk
  5. supply all necessary equipment, machinery and plant
  6. ensure that all equipment, machinery and plant is suitable for the job
  7. ensure that all equipment, machinery and plant is safe, regularly maintained and appropriately guarded
  8. arrange for the maintenance of all electrical equipment supplied for use in the employee’s home
  • Note:
  • The hard wired electrical sockets and ring mains supplies are the employee’s own responsibility but the employer’s representative will advise on cabling and socket usage in the risk assessment.
  1. ensure that any substances provided are assessed and suitably controlled
  2. supply personal protective equipment if needed
  3. provide, where practicable, scope for varying work patterns and to allow employee input into how the work is carried out, to ensure homeworkers take periodic breaks during the working day
  4. ensure that homeworkers have the opportunity to be kept informed of what is going on within the company via their management
  5. review risk assessments whenever there are significant changes and at least annually.

Duties of Managers and Supervisors

  1. The organisation is responsible for the health, safety and welfare of homeworkers as far as is reasonably practicable.
  2. Line managers are responsible for ensuring homeworkers receive the appropriate training and information.
  3. Line managers are responsible for facilitating risk assessments and putting in place appropriate controls.
  4. If the line manager is unable to deal with problems uncovered in the risk assessment, the line manager should refer these problems up the management chain.
  5. Line managers are accountable for implementing arrangements to ensure regular contact with the homeworker to monitor that standards of health and safety are being maintained.
  6. Risk assessors are responsible for undertaking risk assessments of homeworkers on behalf of line managers.
  7. Risk assessors should advise both the homeworker and the relevant line manager of risks and their appropriate controls.

Duties of Employees

  1. Homeworkers are responsible for their own health, safety and welfare and that of others affected by their work whilst working at home.
  2. Homeworkers are required to report any problems directly to their line manager. This will include incidents and near misses
  3. Homeworkers are required to follow all training and instruction received.
  4. Homeworkers are required to use personal protective equipment when appropriate.
  5. If the homeworker is unable to follow the work arrangements, training and instruction, the homeworker must cease work and report the problems to his or her line manager immediately.

Information and Training

  1. Suitable information and training will be provided to all homeworkers in the tasks that they are employed to do and the equipment they will be using.
  2. Training needs will be identified and reviewed by a responsible person.
  3. Homeworkers will be trained in emergency procedures in case of an accident in the home.
  4. Refresher training will also be given at reasonable intervals.
  5. Supervisors/Managers of homeworkers will be trained in how to deal with employees working off site, eg ensuring prearranged regular contact, how to recognise signs of stress in home workers, etc.