Apologies for the clumsy title, but as many of us 'get our feet under the table' and adjust to WFH or blended/hybrid ways of working... I, personally, think this is going to be an evolving area of opportunity - but also potential tension between employers and employees.
How far should workplace policies, norms and 'culture' transfer into an employees home?
Some of the measures employers are taking would (to me) appear unreasonable - like taking a sledgehammer to crack a nut. You may have picked up on one of both of these articles in recent days...
'I monitor my staff with software that takes screenshots' - BBC
Shirking from home? Staff feel the heat as bosses ramp up remote surveillance - The Guardian
We've discussed this broad topic before on this Community - for example, this thread from just before lockdown...
When does staff time tracking become 'Big Brother'?
...but also as far back as 2015.
Computer surveillance in the workplace
But where is the 'line'?
Unsurprisingly, in recent weeks I've seen many more discussions here on topics like WFH set up allowances, provision of equipment for home-working, training provision, but also smoking or vaping during work video calls.
In that last one, Peter Cunningham argued the 'duty of care' towards all employees does in some circumstances extend into the 'workplace at home', and might be enforceable. Peter knows his onions. Likewise, Keith posed a question (I can't find the thread at the moment)...
Wouldn't it be a good thing if an organisation could accurately predict when say a Call Centre workers stress was rising and they were likely to need a break rather than ranting at a customer by monitoring their blood pressure, pulse or whatever? Or similarly in a factory setting? Monitoring an employees health "may" within appropriate guidance be the logical manifestation of wellness - making it real and practical rather than simply conceptual.
What do you think? I think things are going to get interesting!
ps You may be interested in registering for our free webinar on 6th October...
CIPD Coronavirus webinar series: Home-working long-term