Flexible Working 2014: Are You Ready for the New Rules?
New flexible working rules in the UK mean that bosses could face an interesting health and safety dilemma. We roundup the optionsΓÇª
From 30th June┬á2014, all UK workers will be entitled to request flexible working from their employer. But before you get ready to OK workersΓÇÖ homeworking requests, you might want to give health and safety a thought, as youΓÇÖre still responsible for making sure that each and every remote-working employee’s workstation meets the correct requirements.
No problems there, thenΓÇª
But just supposing some of your employees donΓÇÖt have a fully-equipped, health and safety compliant home office?
For the employee who doesnΓÇÖt have a proper workstation
For the employee who has the space, but hasnΓÇÖt had the forethought to kit it out in accordance with health and safety, the solution is simple: provide them with a suitable chair (fully adjustable, adequate back support), and an appropriate desk (think leg room).
But why stop there? To help them feel more at, err, work in their own home, you could arrange to have the walls of their spruced up office painted in your corporate colours. A framed poster of your company values would make an excellent ΓÇ£moving inΓÇ¥ present.
And donΓÇÖt forget the clean desk policy ΓÇô itΓÇÖs all about instilling corporate culture.
For the employee who doesnΓÇÖt have a spare room
So what about employees who donΓÇÖt have a spare room to act as an office? Well, you could turn their request down, but that seems a little unfair. After all, with a little ingenuity and a moderate sum of money you could transform their garden into their very own slice of the corporation they love so much.
Yes, a garden office is the ideal solution for those employees without the indoor space for a homeworking haven. And you can relax safe in the knowledge that youΓÇÖve made good on that pledge to invest in your people.
(Note: build this garden office with enough capacity for two or three desks, and you can accommodate those of your employees who donΓÇÖt have a garden or a spare room.)
Maybe thereΓÇÖs a simpler solution?
We like to think so. Of course, under the new rules, while everyone is entitled to ask, you donΓÇÖt have to grant permission. But with flexible working becoming increasingly sought-after by workers, you probably donΓÇÖt want to be the boss who says no.
Flexible workspace is a far easier and more cost effective way to offer your employees flexible working away from the office. TheyΓÇÖll get proper desks, adjustable chairs, and in many cases, you can actually offer them a choice of locations, giving them the freedom to choose where they work.
In particular, issuing employees with hot-desking passes will give them access to properly equipped workstations in locations which are a little more convenient than the HQ. Even mobile workers can take advantage ΓÇô some hot-desking passes allow workers to access a network of offices across the UK.
Much, much simpler than building home offices for all your employeesΓÇª
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