Published: March 24, 2020
Whilst you may be comfortable sitting on the sofa with your laptop, it is advisable to use a proper table and chair and do a risk-assessment of your workstation. Check that the lighting is good. Be aware of wires becoming trip-hazards to you and others in the house. Check your posture and seating position to ensure that you are not slouching. Try to sit upright with your feet touching the floor and with proper line of sight to your screen. Ensure that your arms are horizontal with the keyboard and that you are not stretching to reach your mouse etc.
Your employer has a ‘duty of care’ when asking you to work from home and should provide you with proper guidance and equipment – but for comfort and safety in the short-term, try using cushions to aid physical support whilst sitting at your temporary workstation. Finally, be sure to take regular breaks and get up from your chair to walk around, stretch, eat and stay hydrated.
Separating your working life from your home life can be difficult at first. If you’re not used to working from home, you can easily get distracted and/or end up working extended hours. To avoid this, try establishing a routine to manage your day. Good tips include setting yourself fixed hours…. getting dressed into/out of your normal work clothes to manage the psychological boundary between work and home…. and asking family members to avoid disturbing and interrupting you unnecessarily during working hours etc.
If avoiding disruptions is impossible and your work doesn’t involve you having to be at your desk during set hours (i.e. call answering/customer service etc), another approach is to set yourself a reasonable number of tasks to be completed each day. Whilst this approach might stretch your working hours across the day, the positive impact is that you can use it as a way of managing your energy levels and avoiding disruptions around normal family life. If you’re finding either of these approaches difficult – especially during the Covid-19 crisis – speak with your line-manager to find a reasonable solution and workaround.
Don’t be alone – there are many others in your situation right now. Speak to friends, family and colleagues about how they are managing. Try to maintain healthy social contact between co-workers and exchange notes on how you are each coping with working from home. The equivalent of a ‘virtual’ coffee machine chat can be achieved and maintained through social media, conference calling and/or a simple telephone chat, and is a healthy part of maintaining good working relationships. Whilst you might be relying on your line-manager for help and support at this time, remember that they might need support too – so check in with their wellbeing when you can.
For FREE telephone advice about setting up good remote-working practices, please do get in touch. We can also put you in contact with specialist H&S and HR professionals who are offering free advice at this time.
If you need more robust management support and advice, Enrichyou have a range of virtual coaching and management support packages available to help you and your team at 33%-OFF our normal rates during April, May and June. No matter whereabouts in the UK your employees are working from, we can provide regular, professional wellbeing and self-management coaching sessions by phone, Skype or Zoom to help ease the pressure on your own management capacity during this difficult time.
We are also committed to providing up to 4 hours a week of FREE virtual wellbeing coaching to blue-light card holders throughout the Covid-19 crisis. Ask for details.
For more information, contact Andrew or Richard on 01733 645001 or email us on: firstname.lastname@example.org