Working from home: DSE risk assessments

  • Eventually, the decision will need to be taken by each organisation as to when “temporary home-working” becomes “home-working
  • In our latest Risk Topic, we look at what employers need to make sure that they have assessed when it comes to temporary homeworkers display screen equipment.

In our Risk Topic titled “Managing additional home working exposure” we highlighted the issue of DSE (Display Screen Equipment)-related considerations as follows:

Adequate guidance in respect of display screen equipment (workstation layout, breaks from DSE work, etc.) should be provided, as would be the case on the normal premises. Best practice would be to ask employees to carry out a risk assessment (preferably with photographs) that can be checked centrally. However, the HSE emphasised on 18th March that “if you have people working from home temporarily because of #Coronavirus you do not need to do display screen equipment (DSE) workstation assessments”.

The HSE has stressed that “Employers have the same health and safety responsibilities for employees working from home as for any other employees”.

In this update, we are primarily concerned with the matter of “temporary” homeworkers rather than those already established in this situation. There is of course potential for future employers’ liability claims arising from unsuitable practices whilst working at home “temporarily”, including use of display screen equipment. Employers need to make sure that they have taken all reasonable steps to control the risk.

Download our Risk Topic, DSE risk assessments for home workers, for more information on what employers should be doing as ‘temporary’ homeworkers continue to work from home.