Coronavirus: information and updates

Working from home

Working from home can be good for work/life balance, especially if you find travelling difficult or you have good days and bad days with your health.

Before you work from home, think about the issues you could face and how you could manage them.

Talk to your employer about what you might need to work from home, such as:

  • a space to work undisturbed
  • a computer
  • a reliable internet connection (your employer might pay part of your broadband bill)
  • digital tools such as Trello, Skype or Slack to help you work with others

You should ask your employer about the equipment you need to work from home. Your employer should check the place where you work to make sure that it's a safe working environment.

Claim tax relief for working at home (GOV.UK)

Working from home as a reasonable adjustment

If you ask for home working, you do not have to say you are disabled. But if you do, it is harder for employers to say no. You have more rights to work from home under the Equality Act 2010.

Your employer has a duty to make reasonable adjustments for you to do your job. If home working is reasonable and necessary, they must agree. What is 'reasonable' will depend on what you need and the kind of job that you do.

Reasonable adjustments at work

Pros and cons of home working

Not being in the same place as your colleagues can present challenges. This can affect your mental health and make you feel like you’re out of touch.

You could:

  • work from home for part of the week and then go to the office for 1 or 2 days
  • communicate with colleagues using video, audio or instant messaging services
  • make time to see friends and family when you are not working
  • make the most of activities you can attend (check that these are accessible)

Getting to know people at work

Pros and cons of home working (Aspire)

Being productive at home

To be more productive, you could:

  • have a quiet space just for work
  • set specific work and break times
  • remove all the distractions you can, including turning off notifications on your phone
  • wear noise-cancelling headphones
  • keep your work area organised
  • sign out of personal email and social media accounts

Career progression

People in the office may find it easier to show their managers that they’re doing a good job.

You could try:

  • going into the office for 1 to 2 days a week if you can
  • communicating regularly with your line manager and other colleagues
  • go to networking events 
  • look for chances to take on more responsibilities

Work/life balance

Here are some suggestions from home workers:

  • Dress as if you are going to work.
  • Have a proper breakfast before you start.
  • Set fixed work times and stick to them as much as you can.
  • Have a separate place to work (if you can).
  • Have a proper lunch break and eat away from your desk.
  • Take regular screen breaks if you work at a computer.
  • Put your work things away when you finish.

Last reviewed by Scope on: 22/03/2022

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