Let’s professionalise home-working

Issued : 31 July 2020

This Wednesday, 5th August 12-6pm, FSU’s advice centre will be taking calls and answering questions on working from home. Want to know about your rights and your employers’ responsibility? Take a quick ergonomic test to see about your workspace? Or just talk more about FSU’s working from home protocol then give us a call on our freephone numbers (ROI) 1800 819 191 (NI-GB) 0800 358 0071 or email us at [email protected] .

FSU has launched a protocol for working from home that seeks solutions from employers on increased intensity of work, employee-led flexibility and choice over hours and location of work, equipment for a home office and the right to disconnect and overtime payment, allowances for home working and making sure the right security software is in place. Home working was sprung on so many workers almost overnight. It is now time to professionalise it and make it work better for you.

Employers will make significant cost savings in rent, utility bills, stationary and more. It is important that this drive to home working is not all one-way and that savings are shared and profits are distributed fairly between employers and workers. FSU is calling for a mandatory working from home allowance to be introduced. As we move out of summer months and into a darker, colder winter, there is no doubt but the true cost of working from will begun to be felt by workers. As well as this, can you really put a price on the office taking over space in your home? This use of space is an imposition and needs to be paid for by employers.

We also know that those working from home have to often juggle caring responsibilities and personal commitments with working time. So, our protocol calls for more flexibility for employees to set their hours and location of work to create a more harmonious work and life balance. This requires a management culture of trust and not surveillance.

Late last year FSU members participated in huge numbers in the Govt consultation on flexible working which produced a report that supported our right to disconnect campaign. The Government has now opened another consultation, following FSU’s protocol, looking specifically for views on remote working. You can send your views to [email protected] by Friday August 7th at 5pm. There is no specific form or survey to submit. Just email the Government what your priorities are. So, for example, if you believe an allowance should be paid email and tell them that. If you believe that overtime payments should be mandatory and paid please email and tell them that. If you have any questions or want help in doing this call our helpline for guidance.

We are available by phone or email on Wednesday, 5th August 12-6pm, at (ROI) 1800 819 191 (NI-GB) 0800 358 0071 or email us at [email protected] .

Gareth Murphy

Head of Industrial Relations and Campaigns