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Responsible working from home: what should your employer do, and what can you do yourself?

Woman writes in her notebook.

Because of the corona virus, everyone who can do this has to work from home as much as possible. That is not a problem if you have a nice office at home. But you may now be sitting at the kitchen table all day long, on a chair that gives you back pain. Or do you have to work with unsuitable equipment, such as a slow computer. What should your employer do so that you can work responsibly from home? And what can you do yourself?

Your employer must make working from home possible

Important to know: when you are employed by an employer, they must provide suitable and safe working conditions. Even if you are working outside the company building, such as now with the corona crisis. It starts with your employer having to ensure that you can do your job at all. For example, if you don't have a suitable computer at home, you can ask for a company laptop. Need a headset for calling? Ask your employer. And do you need a faster internet connection for your work than the one you currently have at home? Then you can arrange this, but the costs are for your employer.

You must be able to work responsibly

But that is not everything. Your employer must also ensure that you can do your work safely. You must not run any danger or damage your health at your workplace. Not even now that the workplace is at home at the dining table. If you want to be able to work in a better posture and you need a laptop stand, separate keyboard and mouse, then your employer must provide it. This also applies to a good chair and adjustable desk - although you will probably only ask for this when working from home takes much longer.

Do it in consultation

Employers therefore have a lot of obligations towards employees who work from home. At the same time, we recommend that you consult your employer carefully now. This is also an uncertain time for him or her, in which income may disappear and costs rise. So do not ask the utmost from your employer, but try to come up with solutions together that you are both satisfied with.

You can do this yourself

You can also do a lot yourself to get through this home working time as well as possible. For example, make sure that you are not constantly in the same position, which is bad for your health. You can also read a piece in another place in the house: the sofa, the balcony, the garden. Do you receive a call? An excellent time to get up and walk in circles. Also try to keep in regular contact (by telephone or video calling) with your colleagues. Not only in business matters, but also to ask how they are doing. Try to find a distraction in between, so that you don't work continuously. Drink plenty of water so that you often have to refill and go to the toilet. And take a walk after lunch. Keep a distance of 1,5 meters, of course, and wash your hands when you get home.

Complaints?

Have you worked in a wrong position, and is it now bothering you? Then contact the company doctor. He or she can assess what is bothering you, why and what you can do about it. This makes it easier to discuss solutions with your employer.

More information

Questions about working from home or this article? Feel free to contact us, our experts are there for you every working day from 8.00 a.m. to 18.00 p.m. sc@unie.nl en 0345 851 963. Curious about other consequences that corona has on your work and income? Check our special corona page.