Working from home
Working from home to support Social Distancing in the Workplace - Guiding Principles - updated 29 May 2020
As our Trust moves into phase two of our Covid-19 response, it is critical that our services are able to respond to changing requirements in an agile way. However, at the same time, we must continue to ensure that we are able to work safely. We are encouraging teams to collectively consider and agree new ways of working; think innovatively about what would work best for your teams to enable you to provide services, whilst also considering what has worked well so far that you would like to continue.
This guidance will support both the individual and the manager to ensure working from home is a positive experience, and provides information on everything you may need, including IT access and health and wellbeing considerations, to practically and effectively work from home. For more information: Home and Remote Working Guidance (v1.9).
The guidance will continue to be developed during the period of Covid-19, however, below are some guiding principles to help more of us to work from home, which in turn will support social distancing within the workplace. These will be reviewed every two weeks and/or as national and government guidance is released.
- Working from Home: Wherever operationally practicable we should facilitate staff to work from home, in line with the government guidance. Note these arrangements may be subject to review, should the priorities of the hospital change, then staff may be required to support in other various areas of the Trust.
- Roles Required on Site: Understanding that we have a great number of teams with roles which require staff to have an on-site presence, consideration should be given to allowing staff to work from home on a rotational basis on days when they are not required to be on site. Teams will need to give careful consideration to work that can be done remotely and work which needs to be completed on site. This can be linked to considerations around workplace configurations, and the rotation or cohorting of staff based upon individual working patterns, to support social distancing.
- Flexible Working Hours: Teams should discuss and agree the flexibility of working hours and availability of staff both working at home and within the workplace, taking into account each person's individual preferences and personal circumstances. This will also enable managers to limit the number of individuals within a workspace at any one time, as well as enabling staff to avoid peak travel times when using public transport. Managers may be able to be flexible about when the work is done and be supportive to some duties being carried out after normal working hours. Note where staff have requested to work in what would normally be deemed to be unsocial hours this work will not attract any form of pay enhancement.
- Personal Preference: We may have a number of individuals who do not wish to work from home for various reasons, such as not having a suitable place at home from which they can work, increased distractions, or working styles and preferences. Line managers and their teams need to consider how these staff could beneficially support the completion of key on-site tasks.
- Access to Shared Folders and Hardware: Hardware and remote access can be requested from IT via your General Manager, following the guidance below. Rostering or prioritising individuals may be required depending on the availability of equipment. Access to some systems is available via a non-Trust device such as a home PC, with further details in the guidance below.
- Health, Wellbeing and Safety: We encourage line managers and their teams to continue to consider everyone’s health, well-being and safety, ensuring all staff continue to feel a sense of team, regardless of their working location. Ensure there is an effective process for 2 way communication, to enable all staff to feel comfortable in providing feedback and putting forward ideas for continuous improvement. Manager’s should regularly check-in with team members who are working from home for an extended period.
- The Digital Workplace: Staff use of technology should be encouraged wherever possible, to increase team connectivity and meeting effectiveness. Microsoft Teams has been implemented and provides features such as instant messaging, voice and video conferencing and screen sharing. Click here for guidance on accessing and using Microsoft Teams.
- Lessons Learned: We encourage all teams and departments to consider what has worked well during our response to Covid-19, and the new ways of working you wish to continue longer term, utilising these solutions to additionally support the continuation of social distancing and home working.
Remote Working DSE Assessment Form
Click here for the latest Display Screen Equipment (DSE) Assessment for Home Workers form - 16/06/2020
Remote access to Trust IT systems
If you only require access to Trust email, all colleagues can access email online via the nhs.net website using any personal device. Visit https://portal.nhs.net/ and log in using your nhs.net email address and password.
If you need remote access to other LTHT systems, there are two options:
- Limited system access using a non-Trust device (e.g. home desktop)
- This option allows access to a limited set of applications (Xero, PPM+, Patient Pass, LTHWeb, AVA Telephone Directory, Leeds Health Pathways, Incident Reporting, Melvis, ICE/Ordercomms (via Internet Explorer only). To see an updated list of web applications available please click here.
- Access to data drives (e.g. G:) will not be available.
- We are currently testing additional applications to see if they work via this mechanism and will issue an update when appropriate.
2. Full system access using your existing Trust laptop
- This provides access to all trust systems, applications and data drives (e.g. G-Drive)
To request access to options 1 or 2 please complete and submit a Remote Access Request form, available to download below. Please note that due to unprecedented demand fulfilment timescales are longer than usual so please bear with us.
The Trust has limited capacity to support remote working and we would therefore ask you to consider the following guidance:
- If you only require access to email you do not need a remote access VPN connection
- If you are working on a document, please disconnect from the VPN remote access network
- Do not leave connections/systems open when not required
- Ensure you log off and shutdown at the end of your working day to alleviate pressure on the systems
If you have any questions about remote working, please contact the Informatics Service Desk (firstname.lastname@example.org)
A further guide to staff working from home can be found here
Trust IT systems and remote access
The Trust Informatics team are regularly publishing the latest IT updates during the pandemic, including support for remote working. Please access the latest information here
Previous updates include:
Click on the links below for other related IT updates:
- Staff behaviours when working from home
- A guide to accessing and using Microsoft Teams
- Application access from personal devices
- Cyber security at home
- Keeping in touch with patients and colleagues