Working At/From Home

The policy demonstrates arrangements for working at home and working from home. 

Detailed in the tabs below you will find Working At/From policy and process information in place in your Board.

National Services Scotland

Through NHS Scotland Working at Home and Working from home has been defined as: 

Working at Home: 

This is where staff are required on their contract of employment to have their office based in their home, even though their contract of employment requires them to have their office based on the employer’s premises. 

And  

Working from Home (Home workers) 

This is where staff are required in their contract of employment to have their office based in their home, even though they may work other than at home for part of their working time  

Working at / from Home is the ability to carry out work tasks from home and can take many forms.  This could include 

- workers who divide their time between home and the workplace 

- mobile workers who work from home as an administrative base 

- workers performing overtime. 

Sometimes the tasks are carried out 

- on a one off basis 

- for a short period 

- to allow rehabilitation for a worker returning after illness 

- to support a better work life balance. 

Many tasks are largely desk based but there are jobs performed by home workers that involve the use of equipment, machinery, or substances that may be harmful to their health or other people present in the home. 

NHS 24

Through NHS Scotland Working at Home and Working from home has been defined as: 

Working at Home: 

This is where staff are required on their contract of employment to have their office based in their home, even though their contract of employment requires them to have their office based on the employer’s premises. 

And  

Working from Home (Home workers) 

This is where staff are required in their contract of employment to have their office based in their home, even though they may work other than at home for part of their working time  

Working at / from Home is the ability to carry out work tasks from home and can take many forms.?This could include 

  • workers who divide their time between home and the workplace 
  • mobile workers who work from home as an administrative base 
  • workers performing overtime. 

Sometimes the tasks are carried out 

  • on a one off basis 
  • for a short period 
  • to allow rehabilitation for a worker returning after illness 
  • to support a better work life balance. 

Many tasks are largely desk based but there are jobs performed by home workers that involve the use of equipment, machinery, or substances that may be harmful to their health or other people present in the home. 

NHS Education for Scotland

NES supports the principle of achieving a work/life balance for employees and this includes giving employees the opportunity to work more flexibly wherever practicable.  All posts will be advertised as potentially suitable for flexible working (including homeworking) unless there are specific grounds for a post to be excluded.

NHS Golden Jubilee

This policy applies to any post where work is performed at or from home, instead of at or from the employer's premises, for a significant proportion of the contractual working hours.

There are a number of reasons why home working and working at home is desirable, including:

  • providing greater flexibility;
  • increasing scope to meet NHS Golden Jubilee's commitment to equal opportunities, for example it may enable a person with disabilities to do a job they otherwise would not be able to do;
  • reducing energy consumption and pollution from unnecessary car journeys;
  • broadening the traditional recruitment market and gaining access to alternative labour markets;
  • attracting and retaining staff; and
  • providing a working environment which enables work to be carried out effectively and efficiently.

Public Health Scotland

Through NHS Scotland Working at Home and Working from home has been defined as: 

Working at Home: 

This is where staff are required on their contract of employment to have their office based in their home, even though their contract of employment requires them to have their office based on the employer’s premises. 

And  

Working from Home (Home workers) 

This is where staff are required in their contract of employment to have their office based in their home, even though they may work other than at home for part of their working time  

Working at / from Home is the ability to carry out work tasks from home and can take many forms.  This could include 

- workers who divide their time between home and the workplace 

- mobile workers who work from home as an administrative base 

- workers performing overtime. 

Sometimes the tasks are carried out 

- on a one off basis 

- for a short period 

- to allow rehabilitation for a worker returning after illness 

- to support a better work life balance. 

Many tasks are largely desk based but there are jobs performed by home workers that involve the use of equipment, machinery, or substances that may be harmful to their health or other people present in the home. 

Scottish Ambulance Service

The policy provides a framework for managing home working arrangements.  It is the responsibility of the line manager to determine if it is appropriate for staff to work from home.  When considering requests from staff to work from home, line managers must ensure the overall needs of the Service are met, and ensure that productivity and quality is maintained.

The State Hospital

The State Hospital supports the principle of achieving a work/life balance for employees and this includes giving employees the opportunity to work more flexibly wherever practicable. It is the Line Manager’s responsibility to determine if it is appropriate for Staff to work from home. When considering requests from staff to work from home, line managers must ensure the overall needs of the Service are met, and ensure that productivity and quality is maintained.

    • What are PHS duties to home workers?Public Health Scotland

      How PHS fulfil their duties will depend on the sort of work that is being carried out at home and what equipment and assistance needs to be provided.  Most health and safety issues around home working are no different from those of conventional office working and could be classified as 'low risk', but NSS is required to be confident in this.   

      If the work involves more high-risk activities such as manual work, working with adhesives or chemicals or having visitors to the home, then PHS and the employee’s Line Manger must ensure that the risk assessment is more detailed, adequately addressing the specific risks involved. 

      This risk assessment may direct the Manger to provide suitable work equipment and safety equipment including personal protection equipment to the same standard as provided to work based employees. In particular Display Screen Equipment (DSE) users should have an adequate workstation with a proper chair, desk and IT equipment and you should consider whether the home workplace's ventilation, temperature, lighting, space, and floor are suitable for the tasks the home worker will be carrying out. 

      PHS is responsible for the equipment it supplies, but it is the employee's responsibility to rectify any flaws in the home highlighted by the assessment. 

      Once the home workplace has passed the assessment, it is the employee who is responsible for maintaining the situation and advising the employer of any changes.  If the home working practice is long term, the risk assessment should be repeated as it would in a work environment. 

    • What are NSS duties with regards to home workers?National Services Scotland

      How NSS fulfil their duties will depend on the sort of work that is being carried out at home and what equipment and assistance needs to be provided.  Most health and safety issues around home working are no different from those of conventional office working and could be classified as 'low risk', but NSS is required to be confident in this.  

      If the work involves more high-risk activities such as manual work, working with adhesives or chemicals or having visitors to the home, then NSS and the employee’s Line Manger must ensure that the risk assessment is more detailed, adequately addressing the specific risks involved.

      This risk assessment may direct the Manger to provide suitable work equipment and safety equipment including personal protection equipment to the same standard as provided to work based employees.  In particular Display Screen Equipment (DSE) users should have an adequate workstation with a proper chair, desk and IT equipment and you should consider whether the home workplace's ventilation, temperature, lighting, space, and floor are suitable for the tasks the home worker will be carrying out.

      NSS is responsible for the equipment it supplies, but it is the employee's responsibility to rectify any flaws in the home highlighted by the assessment.

      Once the home workplace has passed the assessment, it is the employee who is responsible for maintaining the situation and advising the employer of any changes.  If the home working practice is long term, the risk assessment should be repeated as it would in a work environment.

    • What are the risks for working at / from home?National Services Scotland

      Actual hazards presented by working at/from home will to some extent depend on the nature of the work being carried out.  Some common working at/from home hazards include:

      - manual handling and upper limb disorders

      - lone working

      - driving for work

      - use of work equipment

      - hazardous substances and materials

      - display screen equipment (DSE)

      - slips, trips and falls

      - stress

      - electrical equipment

      If electrical equipment is provided by NSS for use in the home, then NSS has responsibility for its maintenance and examination. Parts of the home worker's domestic electrical system, including electrical sockets and the system itself are the home owner's own responsibility.

      Because homes are not designed to be workplaces, working at/from home may require a specific assessment and assurances for the employer that work can be carried out safely.  A decision about whether the work and the worker are suitable for working at/from home will have to be made.

      A risk assessment of the work activities and appropriate measures to reduce risks may include a need to visit the employee's home. This would be done with the cooperation of the working at/from home worker.

      NSS and Mangers should consider the following issues: -

      - Insurances, for either mortgage or lease agreements, and for the loss or damage of equipment.

      - I.T. Equipment, suitable Internet systems and remote access to databases.

      - Working hours, communication, isolation and support.

      - Where will the employee set up their desk/workstation so as not to interfere with family life?

      - Is the work a risk to others in the home such as children?

      - Would the home workers require specific adaptations to be able to perform the work due to disability?

      - The suitability of the home to act as a meeting place for work visitors.

      - Fire risks and the provision of extinguishers.

      - Storage of tools or materials.

      - Home and document security.

      - First aid provision and the recording and reporting requirements for accidents including those required under RIDDOR.

      - Is the worker a new and expectant mother?