Policies and procedures for telework once the business reopens.
- In Polish labour law there are two types of work from home. The first type is “telework”, that may be introduced on the basis of an agreement with trade unions, or when there are no trade unions at the facility – in the regulations consulted with employee representatives. Telework should also be agreed for individual employees in their employment contracts. Alternatively, irrespective of the agreement with trade unions or the regulations, telework might be also introduced with regard to individual employees upon their request.
- Based on the provisions of law, in the case of telework, the employer is responsible for OHS conditions, as well as for providing the employee with all the necessary equipment (unless the employee has agreed to use their own equipment (BYOD) in exchange for a cash equivalent) and technical support. The employer also bears the costs of maintaining and operating the equipment. The employer determines the principles of protection for the data transferred to the teleworker and if necessary carries out an instruction training in this area. The employee confirms in writing that they have become familiar with the data protection principles.
- The second type of work from home – “remote work” was officially introduced into the Polish labour law by the Act of 2nd March 2020 on Combating COVID-19. It is meant to be a flexible alternative to the overregulated telework and indeed became very popular among employers and employees and still remains an option. However the currently binding regulations do not specify the conditions for performance during remote work. Therefore some claim that the rules of telework should apply accordingly in this case. It is recommended that in such a case employers collect employee statements that they have appropriate OHS conditions to perform remote work and they undertake to keep confidentiality of data processed at work. Arguably employers should provide employees with the necessary equipment and refund for the operating costs.