Employees working from home, or remotely, have become a part of standard practice in today’s workforce. One of the biggest differences this brings is that you may be isolated or home alone throughout the day, or you may have to share your space with others, such as roommates, family members, children, etc. This also means that monthly workplace inspections and other safety matters will all need to be considered by the employee at home.
People often feel a sense of safety when at home, therefore, sometimes safety items are forgotten or overlooked while working from home.
Fires, burns, chemical poisoning, musculoskeletal disorders, cyber security attacks, long periods of isolation, as well as slips, trips, and falls, are all considered common hazards that individuals may face when at home. However, we’ve developed the list below to highlight some safety guidelines to control the common hazards identified:
Have smoke and carbon monoxide alarms on each floor. Make sure to check batteries annually and replace them when necessary. This might seem obvious to some, but these items are usually forgotten. Try setting an alarm on your phone or writing down a reminder in your calendar!
Prepare a first aid kit and leave it in a practical location out of reach from children. Include items such as bandages, gauze, tweezers, disposable gloves, medical tape, scissors, etc. Don’t forget to restock it as needed, so you’re prepared for any emergency.
Make sure all chemicals are properly stored and labeled within your home. Consider the ones that are used regularly such as propane tanks, hairspray, or other aerosol cans, cleaning supplies, nail polish remover, medicine, and bleach.
Take breaks and take them in full. Try your best to maintain a work routine. Check your posture daily and pay attention to how you sit, stand, and move items around the house. Stretch and exercise regularly to build strong muscles and enhance your mental health.
Change passwords frequently. Use two-factor authentication for additional security. Use anti-virus software to protect your computer and other electronics.
Remember to socialize. Reach out to a colleague or a friend. Join a weekly meet-up group like a recreational sports team, book club, or spin class.
Maintain good housekeeping by ensuring hallways and pathways are clear, floors are clean and dry, wires are neatly and properly stored, and counters are disinfected. Sometimes employees that work from home only consider the office or space they are utilizing to complete their work, however, if they are still using the kitchen to make coffee, taking bathroom breaks, and hanging out in the living room on lunch break, then you must consider the house as a whole.