Minimum Standard – Working from Home April, 2012  

Minimum Standard – Working from Home
Minimum Standard – Working from Home
April, 2012
Minimum Standard – Working from Home
Table of Contents Executive Summary ........................................................................................................................ 2 Using This Standard ........................................................................................................................ 2 More information ........................................................................................................................... 2 Standard Provisions ........................................................................................................................ 3 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 1.10 1.11 1.12 Agreement in Principle ........................................................................................................................... 3 Working from Home Agreement............................................................................................................ 3 Approval ................................................................................................................................................. 3 Equipment Required when Working from Home .................................................................................. 4 University Access to the Home Based Work Environment .................................................................... 4 Security of University Assets and Information ....................................................................................... 4 Incident Reporting .................................................................................................................................. 4 Reimbursement of Work Related Expenses ........................................................................................... 5 Rehabilitation and Counselling .............................................................................................................. 5 Monitoring and Review .......................................................................................................................... 5 Termination of the Working from Home Arrangement ......................................................................... 5 Issue Resolution ..................................................................................................................................... 5 Responsibilities ............................................................................................................................... 6 Glossary .......................................................................................................................................... 7 About this Document ...................................................................................................................... 7 Appendices ..................................................................................................................................... 7 Executive Summary This minimum standard defines the assessment process and the work arrangement requirements for a University of Tasmania employee to perform University work in a home based work environment. A Working from Home Agreement must be completed and approved, prior to a University employee being permitted to work from home. Using This Standard This standard applies to University of Tasmania employees requesting to work and/or working at approved offsite home based work environments. This standard is to be applied in conjunction with the Minimum Standard – Screen Based Equipment. Exemptions: A Working from Home Agreement is not required for “one off”, unplanned or impromptu situations, but discussion and prior approval by the employee’s supervisor is still required. Exemptions for any other requirement(s) in this minimum standard may only be approved by the Work Health and Safety (WHS) Unit, following consultation with the relevant Responsible Officer. More information For further information, contact the Human Resources ‐ WHS Unit: Email: [email protected] Minimum Standard – Working from Home
Standard Provisions Whilst it is preferable for work to be conducted at a University office based work site, an employee may request to perform part of their role from a home based work environment. Work most suitable for home based work environments are tasks that involve a high degree of individual autonomy and minimal supervision such as: 
Research; 
Assignment marking; 
Report writing; 
Project work; 
Systems design and development; and 
Policy development and analysis. Home based work arrangements are not recommended for tasks that: 
Require a high degree of supervision; 
Require direct face‐to‐face contact with other persons (e.g. staff, students or the public) particularly if the role requires regular team work; 
Are difficult to effectively monitor/measure performance; 
Require substantial use of files and other resources located at the University; 
Involve management of confidential/sensitive information; 
Require the employee to maintain/service University facilities and assets; and 
Have other characteristics deemed by the University as unsuitable for home‐based work. Employees may be permitted to work from home on a routine basis provided it is practical to do so, some work time is spent at the University office based site, and the following provisions are adhered to, as outlined in the Working from Home Flowchart (Appendix 1): 1.1
Agreement in Principle An initial request (verbal or written) should be made by the employee to the relevant Responsible Officer (RO)/Supervisor regarding the proposal to work from home. A preliminary determination of the suitability of the home based work environment and the type of work to be performed shall be discussed/reviewed. If agreement in principle is given by the RO/Supervisor, a more comprehensive assessment (Working from Home Agreement) shall be progressed. If not approved, the employee’s supervisor will discuss the reasons for refusal with the employee. 1.2
Working from Home Agreement The purpose of the agreement is to assess and establish that the proposed working environment is adequate and to identify any action required prior to approval being granted. A copy of a completed Working from Home Agreement form shall be forwarded to the Human Resources department to be included in the employee’s personal file. 1.3
Approval All Working from Home Agreements will be considered on a case by case basis. Before an employee is permitted to commence work from home:  Approval by the RO/Supervisor must be documented in the Working from Home Agreement.  Any actions identified must be completed.  The employee must sign the Working from Home Agreement. Minimum Standard – Working from Home
1.4
1.5
1.6
1.7
Equipment Required when Working from Home Equipment required to safely work from home and who is responsible for providing such equipment, is recorded in the Working from Home Agreement.  Ordinarily the employee will be responsible for all reasonable costs associated with compliance of the home‐based work environment, excluding PC equipment.  Whoever provides/owns an item is responsible for its maintenance and insurance.  University provided equipment shall only be used by the employee, for approved University work related tasks. Movement of equipment from an on campus location to an off campus location must be recorded by the School/Section administration (e.g. in an Asset Register).  When installing or removing University equipment required by the employee to safely work from home, the University will take all reasonable care to minimise damage to the employee’s home and/or property.  If damage is caused by the University’s actions when installing/removing equipment, the University will be responsible for repairs, replacement or compensation. The employee is to notify the University if any problems or difficulties arise with the operation of University provided equipment, and to ensure equipment is returned to the University campus when required to replace, service or repair the equipment.  The employee should not service, upgrade or repair the equipment supplied by the University.  The employee shall take reasonable care to ensure University equipment in their home based work environment is taken care of to minimise damage to the equipment and/or injury to themselves. University Access to the Home Based Work Environment If access to the home based work environment is required by the University, the employee’s consent is required prior to conducting the visit.  A mutually agreed time (within a reasonable timeframe) shall be determined, which preferably should take place within designated working hours.  The purpose of the visit is to be stipulated when seeking the employee's consent and may include access for the following reasons: o WHS purposes, including general inspections, incident investigations and issue/dispute resolution; o Maintenance of faulty equipment; o Audit and routine maintenance of equipment and supplies; o Assessing and monitoring security arrangements of equipment and documents; o Supervision/Performance reviews; and o Any other reason deemed appropriate by the RO/Supervisor. Security of University Assets and Information Security of information, data integrity and privacy in the home‐based work environment shall mirror the University’s office‐based policies, with the employee required to abide by the University’s Information Technology Policy as they would on the University’s premises. Incident Reporting Employees working from home must notify the University of any incident as a result of carrying out tasks in the home based work environment, in accordance with the University WHS Incident‐Response‐Procedure‐v1.0.pdf. Minimum Standard – Working from Home
1.8
1.9
1.10
1.11
1.12
The employee must notify their RO/Supervisor if they are unwell and unable to perform designated tasks scheduled to be performed whilst at home. An application for sick leave must be made. Reimbursement of Work Related Expenses An employee may be reimbursed for reasonable work‐related expenses incurred whilst working from home. Prior approval should be obtained from their RO/Supervisor, and relevant documentation and receipts must be submitted with any claims for reimbursement. Such expenses may include:  Telephone calls made in relation to the work.  Internet access costs necessary to fulfil the requirements of the position.  Consumables necessary in relation to the work undertaken. Rehabilitation and Counselling In accordance with the University’s Rehabilitation of Injured Employees Policy and the insurers approved injury management program, the University will provide rehabilitation and where necessary, counselling will be provided via the Staff Counselling Service. Monitoring and Review Work performance when working at home is to be regularly assessed in terms of quality and quantity, to ensure expectations and required standards of work are being met.  An employee who works from home must have the same career development opportunities as all other employees.  Any variation to working hours and/or home based work conditions/requirements are to be negotiated with the RO/Supervisor, and clearly documented. Termination of the Working from Home Arrangement A Working from Home Agreement may be terminated in writing with reasonable notice (normally 2 weeks) by either the University (RO/Supervisor) or the employee.  Reasons may include if the employee is not meeting agreed work requirements/performance outcomes, changes/issues have occurred that no longer make the working from home agreement practical, or as a result of changes to the home based work environment that no longer make it a safe working environment.  The employee is to return any University owned equipment within 7 days, in a reasonable condition. Issue Resolution If a dispute is raised in relation to a home based work arrangement decision, resolution of the issue shall be carried out in accordance with the University Minimum Standard ‐ WHS Issue Resolution. Minimum Standard – Working from Home
Responsibilities Employee  Comply with all applicable WHS legislation, codes of practice and Australian Standards, and University WHS policies and procedures;  Abide by the agreed Working from Home Agreement;  Perform regular WHS inspections of the home based work environment;  Attend nominated training;  Notify their supervisor as soon as practicable of any work related incident arising out of working from home, completion of the online incident notification form is the preferred method;  Assess the personal implications of commencing home based work with respect to taxation, insurance or leasing arrangements;  If the WHS checklist identifies reasonable adjustments to the home office need to be completed then it is the employee’s responsibility to pay for these reasonable adjustments to be completed, unless otherwise agreed with the University. Human  Maintain Working from Home Agreements on an employee’s Resources/Administration personal file; Responsible Officer (RO) /  Review, approve and monitor Working from Home Agreements. Supervisor WHS Committee  Oversee the development of University WHS policies, procedures and guidance in order to provide direction and support for University management, staff and students with meeting the provisions of this Minimum Standard; WHS Unit  Oversee the University's compliance with this Minimum Standard, and provide advice/guidance to Budget Centres;  Approve any exemptions to meeting Minimum Standard requirements;  Make a final decision if required as part of issue resolution procedures. Minimum Standard – Working from Home
Glossary TERM Employee Home based work Home based work environment Office based site Responsible Officer Supervisor Working from Home Agreement About this Document Title Version Version date Status Authors Revision History Version Release date 1 March, 2005 DEFINITION For the purposes of this minimum standard, an employee is a person employed by the University who has an ongoing or fixed term or casual contract under the terms of the following Agreements (as amended from time to time): Academic Staff Agreement and General Staff Agreement.
Regular performance of University work for agreed hours from an approved home based work environment. An agreed area in the employee’s private dwelling for the purpose of performing the duties agreed between the University and the employee.
Note: A private dwelling is not a ‘workplace’ under the Workplace Health and Safety Act 1995, however, an employee conducting authorised work at home is considered to be ‘at work’, thus the University has a general duty of care towards the employee. The location where the employee would ordinarily work at the University if there were no Working from Home Agreement. Deans, Heads of Division, and Budget Centre Heads. These positions have been designated as Responsible Officers under the Workplace Health and Safety Act 1995. The person who is responsible for day‐to‐day supervision of the employee. A formal, signed agreement clearly documenting all the conditions of a home based work arrangement between the University and an employee. Minimum Standard – Working from Home V1 April 2012 Final Mark Natoli Comments Working from Home Policy (3rd March, 2005) Appendices Appendix 1 – Working from Home Flowchart Appendix 2 – Working from Home Agreement Appendix 3 – Home‐Based Work Environment Assessment Checklist Minimum Standard – Working from Home
Appendix No. 1 Working from Home Flowchart For MINIMUM STANDARD: Working from Home AN EMPLOYEE WANTS TO WORK FROM HOME General discussion with Responsible Officer (RO) / Supervisor No
Agreement in principle? Employee
RO/Supervisor Yes
Complete Working from Home Agreement Discuss decision with Employee No
Employee must not commence work from home Any issues? Yes RO/Supervisor & Employee RO/Supervisor & Employee Declaration Approved?
Yes
Agreement on personal file
No
Follow UTAS Minimum Standard ‐ Issue Resolution
Supply of Equipment Other actions RO/Supervisor & Employee Have all actions been undertaken? Yes
Employee can commence work from home
Monitor & review performance Report incidents Allow access
Employee
Termination of Agreement Employee stops working from home RO/Supervisor
No
End of Agreement RO/Supervisor &/or Employee
Does the Employee want to continue work from home? Yes
Review Working from Home Agreement RO/Supervisor
Minimum Standard – Working from Home
Appendix No. 2 COVER SHEET Working from Home Agreement For MINIMUM STANDARD: Working from Home Working from Home Agreement Employee details To be completed by the Employee that is requesting to work from home Name of employee: Position: Home Address: Designated home based work environment: Date of request: School/Section: (specify work area in the home e.g. Study) Supporting documents The following items may be required for this Working from Home Agreement to be reviewed: WHAT Complete the Home‐based Assessment Checklist. Determine tasks, and supervision, training and equipment required to safely work from home. Outline schedules, contact and
reporting arrangements. Determine who/what needs to be notified HOW  The employee completes and attaches the UTAS Home‐Based Work Assessment Checklist (Appendix 3)  The employee and supervisor completes the Work Arrangements section (included in this agreement document)  If applicable, the employee attaches any extra risk assessment documentation, refer to the Minimum Standard ‐ Risk Management (Project/Task)  The employee and supervisor completes the Communication Arrangements section
(included in this agreement document)  The superior completes the Notification Requirements section (included in this agreement document) APPROVAL Responsible Officer / Supervisor Approval To be completed by the Responsible Officer / Employee’s Supervisor
Is the employee approved to  Yes work from home? Working from Home Arrangement ‐ Start Date:  No ‐ Discuss the reason(s) why with the employee __ __ / __ __ / __ __ __ __ End date: __ __ / __ __ / __ __ __ __ Routine WHS inspection of To be conducted by the employee every: ______________________________
home office: (Specify frequency; e.g. 3 months). Name: Responsible Officer / Supervisor Signature: __ __ / __ __ / __ __ __ __ Date:
(DD/MM/YYYY)
Employee declaration To be completed by the Employee
I, ________________________________ (name of employee), agree that all information provided in this agreement is true and accurate in providing a workplace that is safe and without risk to my health. I agree to comply with all requirements in this agreement and in the Minimum Standard – Working from Home, as well as all relevant UTAS policies and procedures. __ __ / __ __ / __ __ __ __ Employee’s signature: Date:
(DD/MM/YYYY) Minimum Standard – Working from Home
ASSESSMENT PART A – WORK ARRANGEMENTS: Proposed Tasks, Supervision and Training To be completed by the Employee’s Supervisor with the Employee
Clearly outline proposed work / tasks to be performed by the employee in a home based work environment
Is a Risk Assessment of any of the above tasks required to be completed?
Yes No If it is proposed for the employee to complete any work from home other than just general office / computer work, then a risk assessment is required to be completed in accordance with the UTAS WHS Minimum Standard – Risk Management (Project/Task).
Outline the supervision provisions for the above work?
Identify any specific training, instruction, information, experience, etc the employee is required to possess to safely carry out these tasks from home including how the employee will report any incident: Outline any work expectations, and the way in which performance will be monitored and assessed (e.g. measurement of output) Minimum Standard – Working from Home
PART B – EMPLOYEE ASSESSMENT: Workers Compensation and Rehabilitation To be completed by the Employee (and Workers Compensation staff if applicable)
Medical Result
Does the employee have a pre‐existing injury that may be aggravated by performing University work tasks from home? Yes Has the employee seen a health / medical professional about this issue? Yes N/A Does the employee have any recommendations from a health / medical professional? Yes N/A UTAS Workers Compensation approval (if applicable)
Action to be taken / Comments
If “yes”, discuss and answer questions below with UTAS Workers Compensation staff prior to proceeding. No If “no”, skip to Part C. below. No No Result
Action to be taken / Comments
Is the employee approved to work from home? (The suitability of the home based work environment and tasks proposed to be undertaken from home, are to be reviewed as part of the Workers Compensation staff approval). Yes No Name of Workers Compensation staff member: Workers Compensation signature: Date:
__ __ / __ __/ __ __ __ __ (DD/MM/YYYY) PART C – EQUIPMENT REQUIRED To be completed by the Employee’s Supervisor with the Employee
 To be provided by:
Employee
UTAS**
List of required equipment to perform work from home (tick if applicable) * First aid kit * Smoke detector/ Fire alarm (functioning / in‐date)
* Fire controls (e.g. fire extinguisher, fire blanket) – Specify: Head set Computer Computer screen Mouse Keyboard Printer Document Holder Computer desk Fully adjustable chair Footrest Filing / Storage equipment Telephone Stationery Other? Specify below: *Mandatory equipment requirements ** The University is responsible for maintaining University equipment. Minimum Standard – Working from Home
PART D – COMMUNICATION ARRANGEMENTS To be completed by the Employee’s Supervisor with the Employee
Employee Name: Employee’s mobile phone number: Employee’s home phone number: (Co‐workers MUST NOT give the employee’s home number to any other person without the employee’s consent). EMPLOYEE WORK SCHEDULE BY LOCATION Specify the days and/or hours the employee will be working in either their UTAS office or from home EMPLOYEE CONTACT / REPORTING REQUIREMENTS  Diverted to their mobile phone  Diverted to their home phone  Diverted to / Answered by a co‐worker: ____________________  Other (specify): When working from home, is the employee required to call or report in regularly to verify they are ok? Yes No If “YES”, complete details below: Specify any relevant communication procedures required between the employee (when working from home) and co‐workers: When the employee is working from home, their UTAS office phone number must be: If the employee or an employee’s co‐worker has any issues or concerns with the employee’s working from home arrangement – please refer to: (Name of Responsible Officer / Supervisor) Contact Number: NOTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS PART E – DETERMINE WHO / WHAT NEEDS TO BE NOTIFIED To be completed by the Employee’s Supervisor, following approval for the employee to work from home
If approved to work from home, in addition to the actions/control measures identified in any attached assessments, the following notification actions must be undertaken BEFORE the employee can commence work from home: Actions Notify IT regarding access to the campus network
Actioner
Date complete
Responsible Officer / Supervisor ____ / ____ / ________ Notify the employee’s insurance company of the home‐based Employee work arrangement ____ / ____ / ________ Notify the employee’s UTAS work team of the working from Responsible Officer / Supervisor home “Communication arrangements” (Refer Part D above) ____ / ____ / ________ Employee to have an “Emergency Contact List” available in their home office of numbers to call / persons to notify in an Responsible Officer / Supervisor emergency situation. ____ / ____ / ________ Notify UTAS Human Resources: A copy of this working from home assessment is to be put on the employee’s personal file Responsible Officer / Supervisor once all actions are implemented. ____ / ____ / ________ Other? (specify below – attach extra pages if required)
Appendix No. 3 Working from Home For MINIMUM STANDARD: Checklist Working from Home HOME‐BASED WORK CHECKLIST To be completed by the Employee, discussed and signed off with the employee’s supervisor. Note: specialist assistance may be required.
. 1. Ergonomic Set Up and Prevention of Overuse Syndrome Information
The employee has reviewed the screen based work guidelines and the prevention of overuse syndrome information. The information is found on the Work Health and Safety website under the key risk topics tab. 2. Workstation Result
Yes No Result
Is the workstation size adequate for the tasks to be performed?
Yes No Is there adequate leg space to allow free leg movement under the workstation?
Yes No Is the work surface a single continuous surface? Yes No Is a footrest available? Yes No Is the non‐adjustable workstation between 680 – 720mm in height?
Yes No Are most frequently used items within easy reach from the seated position?
Yes No Are cables stowed out of the way?
Yes No 3. Chair Result
Do you have a fully adjustable chair?
Yes No Does the chair have a five‐star base?
Yes No Does the chair move freely? Yes No Is there adequate lumbar support?
Yes No Is the padding adequate? Yes No 4. Computer, Screen, Keyboard Result
Is the screen approximately arms length from user? Yes No Is the screen height approx 400mm above work surface?
Yes No Are characters sharp (no fuzzy edges) standing out against background?
Yes No Can the screen be adjusted (tilted up and down)? Yes No Is there adequate space to use the keyboard in front of the screen?
Yes No 5. Mouse Result
Is the mouse used on a mouse pad?
Yes No Is the mouse on the same height surface as the keyboard?
Yes No Can the mouse be used on either side? Yes No 6. Other Equipment Result
Is a printer required? Yes No Is a document holder required? Yes No Does the document holder support the documents adequately?
Yes No Are documents easy to read and manipulate? Yes No Is a headset required? Yes No Is there adequate storage space? Yes No Are hazards associated with use of smart phones, iPads and other technology identified and controlled? Yes No 7. Environment Result
Is there adequate lighting for the tasks being performed?
Yes No Can glare be controlled by window coverings? Yes No Is the room temperature, humidity and air flow comfortable (heating and cooling as required)? Yes No Appendix No. 3 Working from Home For MINIMUM STANDARD: Checklist Working from Home 8. Other Considerations Result
Is the floor space free from tripping hazards? Yes No Is the PC protected by a circuit breaker and surge protector?
Yes No Are there adequate power outlets to run the PC and other equipment?
Yes No Are all power cables, leads, power boards etc in good condition and have a current test and tag? Yes No Is there a functioning smoke detector in the house?
Yes No Is there safe access and egress available in the event of an emergency (fire)?
Yes No Comments Date of Assessment: Name of employee and any other person(s) completing the Assessment: Supervisor Sign Off Date: Supervisor’s Name: Supervisor’s Signature: 
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