How Employees Can Comply with Remote Working Policies
By Gregory Thyberg on September 18, 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a big impact on multiple aspects of people’s lives, often including where and how they work. Among stay-at-home orders, multiple businesses have had to adopt a remote working policy. For some, this is a short-term plan, while other companies have chosen to maintain a remote working situation indefinitely.
Navigating a new remote working policy can be difficult. It is important that employees comply with remote working policies so they protect their position within their company. Employment law attorney Gregory Thyberg offers tips that workers in the Sacramento, CA, area can follow to make sure they are adhering to remote working policies, while also ensuring their employee rights are protected.
Request a Written Remote Working Policy
Employees cannot properly comply with a remote working policy if they do not know exactly what that policy entails. If a company has adopted a remote work policy, they should create a formal policy that is presented to all employees.
If a remote work policy has not been presented, request that one be provided in writing. A written remote work policy will help employees understand exactly what is expected from them when working off-site, and also serves as protection should issues develop down the road.
Understand Your Job Duties and How They Can Be Performed Remotely
A remote work policy will cover general expectations such as hours that need to be worked, how productivity is tracked, ideal means of communication, etc. but it might not cover specific job duties. Employees should understand how their job duties will be affected by a remote work policy. If any areas of their job are difficult to perform remotely, this should be addressed as soon as possible. If necessary, accommodations should be made to alter job duties (either temporarily or permanently), or to allow those duties to be performed, either by providing additional equipment or by allowing limited time on the job site.
Be Available During Work Hours
When working off-site, it is more difficult for employers to track their employees’ working hours and productivity levels. To avoid unsubstantiated claims of missed work or low productivity, we urge employees in Sacramento to understand exactly how many hours need to be worked, which hours they are required to be available, and how they can track that. If an employer requires that employees are available between the hours of 9 and 5, employees need to be sure that they answer any calls, emails, or messages during that time frame, and report to any scheduled meetings.
Ensure You Have the Proper Equipment
Employees cannot do their job properly if they do not have the right equipment. If an employer is enacting a remote work policy, they should provide any type of equipment that is necessary for the employee to do their job. If an employee lacks what is necessary, they should request it as soon as possible. If proper equipment cannot be provided, then job duties should be altered accordingly.
Don’t Be Afraid to Speak Up or Ask Questions
Employers are responsible for creating a remote work policy that encourages a safe and supportive work environment. If employees feel like that support is lacking, or if they require a better understanding of exactly what is expected of them while they work remotely, they should speak up. Open communication is key to ensuring that remote work policies are a success for both employers and their employees.
If you have questions about your employment rights as a remote worker, employment law attorney Gregory Thyberg would be happy to provide you with some answers. To discuss your concerns, send us a message online at your earliest convenience or call (916) 204-9173 to schedule a consultation at our Sacramento law firm.