Working from home workplace bullying – I have conducted numerous investigations where emails have been the source of the issues that are claimed as being workplace bullying.
With more and more people working from home as a result of COVID 19, businesses, employers and managers are going to be more dependent on the use of email to communicate. It is important to remember that an email cannot express the sentiment behind it and can be easily misinterpreted.
The investigations I have conducted as a result of emails can be categorised as;
It is important to remember that working from home on mass is new to many businesses. There may/will be teething problems. It is also very important to remember that bullying complaints received in the present environment must be addressed quickly and professionally. Complaints that are not handled immediately in this remote working setting will fester and grow quickly causing unnecessary stress and anxiety for all parties and may cause complainants to consult Judge Google for answers.
Some staff, especially those new to working from home, may take this as an opportunity to duck out and get things done that they wouldn’t normally be able to do. A quick workout, a quick trip to the shops, or to get a haircut or to go to Bunnings and this may mean that they are not unavailable to respond to emails immediately, possibly causing frustration on the other end.
Don’t neglect complaints. DO NOT put complaints of bullying via email from employees working from home into the too hard basket. They can’t wait until things return to normal. Remember your Duty of Care.
Another area that businesses should be concerned about is IT security. With many people working from home is your IT and confidential information secure. What will you do if you suspect a breach. This is another area that you cannot leave the investigation on the back burner.
If you don’t have the capacity, experience or expertise to deal with complaints AWPTI is here to help. We can conduct investigations remotely and take the stress away from you – https://awpti.com.au/workplace-investigations/
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