One of the “Places” incidents referred to in “People, Places and Processes – what could go wrong?” is the inability to work from your primary workplace. This could be an office, a factory, your home. For whatever reason, and it really doesn’t matter why, you are unable to work from there for a period of time. Oh, and you had no prior warning of this.
What would you do? Could you and your staff, instantaneously and with no prior warning, start working from somewhere else and be as productive?
For many businesses, their default alternate workplace is their home: i.e. they instruct their staff to work from home for a period of time. This sounds simple, but you do need to have put in place a number of pre-requisites before this has any chance of working.
- They need somewhere at home to use as a work station; even if it is the dining room table.
- They need a computer and telephone.
- They need Internet access of sufficient speed to support their business needs.
- They need secure remote access to your information systems.
- You will still have a Health and Safety obligation
- Oh, and you’d better make sure they don’t need access to paper based documentation that is in the office.
By all means build home working into your contingency plan, but plan it properly and actually get them to work from home occasionally to test that the plan really works.
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