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Compliance & Risk Mitigation: Work From Home

- By Dwaipayan, 03 September 2020 | 5 MIN READ


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The new normal has moved work online in a big way; a lot has changed. Things are not as business as usual. Nevertheless, something remains constant amidst all: Just because employees are now working from home does not imply the rules of the game any longer operate. Company policies in the workplace are still guided with the same bucket of principles even after the COVID-19 outbreak. While every company is unique in its work protocol, there are common issues that should be considered through the lens of work from home.

 

Harassment and Provocation 

While what used to take place at a physical office space is now happening via web conference, phone, and email, the standard norms for professional, respectful behavior apply. It also introduces some new flexibility that needs consideration. For example, people who are not computer-savvy and new to web conference technology should try to be patient and stay away from making comments. Coping with new technology could be stressful but compassion and empathy towards teammates bring in a good working environment even when it comes to working from home. 

Working from home can make you complacent at times, one must be careful that this doesn’t cause you to act in overly familiar ways with colleagues. You ought to remember even if you’re working on your couch, you’re still interacting with people on business grounds. Keep relationship professional and limited to business.

Timelines

Keep the knowledge of time spent on work/assignments. This practice can help you close things both in business and personal. 

While it is easy-going when at home to step away to throw in a load of laundry or get some groceries done, keep this in mind as non-working time and not count it as “on the clock” time. The same applies when you get pulled into a work email or phone call and forget to keep track of the time. Retain a healthy work/life balance and make certain they are paid for all work completed.

Device usage

Most companies run policies on company-issued device usage, and they apply much when in the home. While using employer-issued computers, phones, or tablets, the applicable use of policy limitations pertains. For example, if certain web sites prohibited in the office, they’re off-limits at home as well.

Sensitive and confidential information

When working remotely, it’s likely your company has defined the types of information considered as sensitive or confidential. It is your responsibility for protecting information. If you want to step away from your device, simply lock the computer with a strong password. Be watchful even with your business conversations, the family members may hear something they shouldn’t.

Integrity, Ethics, and code of conduct

Your company’s code of conduct specifies how you and your co-worker should operate on a day-to-day basis. The company’s ethical principles apply completely to a remote work environment. Retaining professionalism is the topmost priority. Dealing with customers and vendors the same way as before remote work safeguards adherence to these policies.

The shift to remote work does not ease the importance of a company’s compliance program. Undeniably, the dispersal of a workforce makes consistent compliance messaging even more essential. Online compliance training can support companies of all sizes to follow compliance programs even in the face of a prolonged period of remote work.

 

There are challenges of compliance when working remotely, implementing compliance can get tricky when working from home. The first step to managing compliance is the understanding of compliance processes by everyone. Some sort of remote training could also help here. The year till now has witnessed some enormous shift towards remote work as everyone is trying to maintain a safe social distancing. Let’s keep in place the compliance efficiency to reap the benefits of a dotless and transparent workplace.

 

 

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