Apart from legislation governing the COVID19 public health crisis there is currently no legislation which recognises an employee's right to work from home. However, the government's publication Making Remote Work: National Remote Work Strategy, sets out to ensure that remote working is a permanent feature in the Irish workplace in a way that maximises economic, social and environmental benefits.
In Ireland, the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 applies to all work locations including an employee's home, remote hubs, client's/suppliers premises and even company vehicles depending on the nature of the work being done. As an employer you have a duty of care to identify, analyse and control the level of risk associated with work hazards regardless of location. You must complete risk assessments which take account of matters such as:
Yes, You must complete an ergonomic assessment for each employee who you have identified as a DSE User*. DSE assessments must be completed by a competent person and recorded in accordance with The Safety, Health and Welfare at Work, (General Application) Regulations 2007, Chapter 5 of Part 2 . Once completed, DSE assessments must generate an action plan which will address any issues raised during the process.
* The term DSE [Display Screen Equipment] and VDU [Visual Display Unit] user are interchangeable.
As an employer you must ensure that the employee has a suitable work area in their home. It is the responsibility of the employer to provide any furniture or equipment required. It is advisable to ensure these are in place prior to the commencement of the Risk Assessment Process.
The Safety, Health and Welfare at Work, (General Application) Regulations 2007, Chapter 5 of Part 2 [Schedule 4] outlines the requirements that must be adhered to my employers in relation to Display Screen Equipment. Employees should be provided with:
Yes. The provision and dissemination of information is a central requirement of legislation in all jurisdictions. Safety, health and wellbeing must be included in induction training. All employees must be able to demonstrate how to use the equipment provided to them in a safe manner. Regardless of the work model, all employees must be undergo training which should include but not necessarily be limited to, ergonomic safety, manual handling [depending on the nature of the work tasks], driver training [if driving for work], emergency procedures, safe systems of work, policy familiarisation and stress/mental health supports.
Under the regulations, the keyboard is required to be tiltable and the keyboard is required to be separate from the screen so as to allow the user to find a comfortable working position which avoids fatigue in the upper body. A laptop does not have a separate keyboard and should not be used for long periods of time. A risk assessment must be carried out to assess the usage of the laptop and the setup of the temporary laptop workstation.
Once we are engaged by a client as their risk management partner, they are set up on our TUTUM Software App. The client [employer] is invited to complete an online questionnaire which details current safety, health and wellbeing arrangements for remote workers. The employer is contacted by their account manager to discuss how to meet specific individual requirements and policy development where necessary. Upon completion of the employer questionnaire, each employee is required to complete an individual questionnaire and short training module. All data generated from the questionnaires is processed and an initial risk assessment report is generated. This report makes recommendations where required. At this stage of the process the employer has the opportunity to purchase recommended furniture. Policy development areas are highlighted and furniture orders are processed, delivered and fitted in individual employee's homes. When furniture is delivered the employee may book their 1-2-1 remote risk assessment. The remote work assessment is completed and final recommendations are made to the employer.
If an employee states on their questionnaire that they don't have a suitable chair and desk, the system will generate an order to you for approval. You are notified of new orders awaiting approval on a weekly basis by email. You can monitor proposed orders at any time via your dashboard on the TUTUM App. You can approve or reject an order at any time. However, the minimum requirement for working at home is that the employee has a suitable desk and chair.
Your records can be accessed at any time via your employer dashboard on the TUTUM software App. The system is GDPR compliant and audit ready 24/7.
Yes. You can add and remove individual employees at any time via your employer dashboard on the TUTUM sofware app.
The app is simple to use. You will be sent a 'How to' tutorial link which explains how to use the Employer Dashboard.