Your questions answered: What health and safety obligations do we have to workers working from home?

By Portner Press on October 4th, 2019
  1. Risk Management
  2. Workplace Safety

We have a few staff working from home (doing administration and IT) in other states and some in remote locations. Could you please advise what procedures we are required to have in place to meet WHS requirements?
Under health and safety legislation in all jurisdictions, you must take reasonably practicable steps to minimise health and safety risks to all workers, including those who work from home. This means ensuring the physical layout of the home workplace is safe and without risks to health, and that these standards are maintained by the worker.

Before allowing workers to work from a home office, you should:

  1. Determine whether it is appropriate for the worker to work from home.
  2. Inspect the home workplace before the worker commences working from home to identify health and safety risks.
  3. Manage any risks you have identified in your inspection.
  4. Train the worker in your policies and safe operating procedures.
  5. Provide and maintain equipment that is safe and without risk to health.
  6. Have the worker complete a 6-monthly home workplace inspection.

Each of the above steps is considered further in chapter W6 Working from Home in the Health & Safety Handbook on Portner Digital.

If you aren’t already a subscriber, you can access this information on a free, no-obligation trial.

Related Articles: