Ask the HR Department: Do I need to set down a remote work policy?

By Kiljon Shukullari, advisory team lead for the HR Advice group at Peninsula Canada. He has his Certified Human Resources Leader (CHRL) designation and specializes in employment relations, talent management, recruitment, and process and program optimization.

While having a remote work policy is not required by provincial employment standards legislation across Canada, employers are advised to create one if they have staff working from home.

Working from home can prove challenging for some employees as the lines between work and personal lives are more blurred. Remote work policies provide clarity and act as a guideline for workers. In their policies, employers can set out expectations for work hours, when employees should be taking breaks, how fast they are expected to respond to communications, as well as realistic expectations and goals for work performance.

Clearly communicating rules for remote work can prevent time theft, presenteeism and loss of productivity. Remote work policies can also give instructions to staff on how they can seek support if they need accommodation, are struggling with mental health, or have any other kind of concern about their remote work arrangement.

Peninsula is an HR and Health & Safety consulting firm serving over 80,000 small businesses worldwide, including dealers in home improvement. Clients are supported with ongoing updates to their workplace documentation and policies as legislation changes. Additionally, clients benefit from 24/7 employer HR advice and are protected by legal insurance.