Occupational Safety, Health and Environmental Guidance
                            Staff Working at Home

1.0 Introduction

This guidance applies to all Cardiff University (CU) staff. The CU Human Resources
Department recognises that employees are not contractually obliged to work from home.
However, in certain circumstances, it may be advantageous for certain staff (who are well) to
work from home, depending on the needs of the University and where the nature of the work
permits. This may be due to personal (dependants, pregnancy, health factors such as
Pandemic Flu) and / or external influences (extreme weather such as heavy snow etc.) that
may be beyond the University’s control.

This document gives general guidance for staff on the risks associated with the discharge of
general CU duties at home. Staff should be familiar with all of the information contained
within and linked to this document.

2.0 General awareness in risks when working at home

2.1 Approval for working at home and ensuring a suitable line of communication

In any circumstance requiring working from home, staff shall seek approval for the task(s)
being undertaken at home and to also notify their Line Manager or nominated representative
of their whereabouts. Staff should ensure a suitable line of communication (email via
internet access / telephone access) is made available when carrying out their daily
contracted hours of employment in the discharge of CU duties.

2.2 Identify hazards

Staff should be able to recognise and control general risks at home. Areas may include the
use of Display Screen Equipment (Laptop computer) or lifting and carrying loads (Files and
folders etc.). It is likely that training may be required and information on courses and how
to book are available on the University web site at:

2.3 Risk assessing the work at home.

Working at home has various risks attributed to it. You should consider those who might be
harmed and how, assess the risk and take appropriate action to remove or reduce the level
of risk as far as possible, then to record the findings and also check the risks from time to
time and repeat the process if needed. Information on risk assessment can be found on the
University web site at:

2.3.1 Risks with CU equipment used at home, electrical and non-electrical

For the nature of the task at home, any electrical and non-electrical CU equipment used
should be suitable and sufficient for the task. Electrical equipment must be within the
Portable Appliance Tested (PAT) date prior to being taken off CU premises and returned
within a suitable time period, which must be before its due PAT date. Electrical equipment
may include a CU Laptop, if it has been provided for normal day to day tasks. Any
deficiencies to CU equipment should be reported to your Departmental Safety Officer as
soon as possible. Information on work equipment is available on the University web site at:
2.3.2 Risks with manual handling

Consideration should be given to the risk involved with the moving and handling of any items
/ equipment required for working at home. The task, individual, load and environment in
which the task will take place must be considered. Information on manual handling is
available on the University web site at:

2.3.3 Risks with working with display screen equipment

If a laptop computer is to be used at home it should not be used for longer than an hour
without a break as laptops are not designed for prolonged use. Information on DSE is
available on the University web site at:

2.4 New and expectant mothers.

Consideration should be given to these individuals as they have risks which are particular to
them as well as the application of the above. Advice and information can be obtained from
HSE publications.

2.5 Reporting Injuries Diseases Dangerous Occurrences Regulations

Any Accident/Incident that arises in the discharge of work activities by a member of staff
should be reported via Cardiff University Accident/Incident Reporting form. Information on
Accident and Incident reporting is available on the University web site at:

3.0 Cardiff University Web Tools and Information

3.1 Tools to assist with working at home.

      Modern Working Environment Portal (School/Directorate shared
       folder, personal drive)
      Staff not using the MWE, email access is (Groupwise)
      Staff using the MWE, email access is (Lotus notes)

3.2 Essential Information on working at home.

      Homeworking, Guidance for Employers and Employees on health and Safety
      CU Staff information
      OSHEU information
      Pandemic Flu

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