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Balance, 2020 Extra Verta   landscapexl

The ‘Arbo’ regulations also apply at home

The Arbeidsomstandighedenwet [Working Conditions Act] (or the Arbowet in short) requires employers to make sure that office employees are working in line with the ergonomic standards. The Arbo standards also apply if your employees are required to work one or more days from home. It is your responsibility as an employer to provide a good (i.e. Arbo-compliant) workstation. However, there are several ways to deal with this.

Refund the purchase price

The simplest option is to allow your employees to buy their own home workstation and then to refund the purchase price (up to a set limit). A variant of this is to issue a fixed amount, in return for which your employees agree to abide by the Arbo standards when working from home. The advantage is that it creates the least amount of work for you. The disadvantage is that you have no control over what your employees buy. There are also a few potential tax issues.
Balance, 2020 Extra Verta   landscapexl

Provide home-working furniture on loan

For full control over the (Arbo-standard) quality of the home workstation you can provide every employee with a (new or used) home workstation on loan if they ask for one. In this case the workstation belongs to you, and if the employee leaves the company the loan agreement ends and the furniture is collected. This approach involves a lot more work (although it can be outsourced), but it shows that you are taking responsibility for the well being of your employees. And it also puts an end to any tax issues.

 

Man speaking   landscapexl
The experience of Rob Keulemans, Director Business Development and homeworking expert:

“It is not a good idea to pass the entire responsibility onto the employee individually. We have learned that when given a budget to spend freely, only few employees spend it on homeworking furniture. Whereas most employees on a fixed home-working budget do.”

Home workstation on credit

Another possibility is to allow every employee the opportunity to buy their own (Arbo-compliant) home workstation on credit (interest-free pre-finance) if they ask for it. The workstation belongs to the employee, so there are no issues with return logistics, storage, cleaning or refurbishing (but remember to arrange for the balance to be paid immediately if an employee leaves shortly after the purchase). More and more companies are taking up this option as it helps them navigate the process with the support of a reliable outsourcing partner.

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