Ask the Accommodation Experts: Work-at-Home Requests

DMEC Staff

Assessing Work-at-Home Requests and Potential “Undue Hardship” on the Employer

Work-At-Home RequestsBy Jenny Haykin, MA

Integrated Leaves & Accommodations
Puget Sound Energy

By Tom Sproger, MS

Ergonomics Consultant
Solutions Northwest Inc.

A senior disability manager from a financial services firm presented this accommodation challenge.

Working from home has become a popular accommodation request at our company. With the advanced technology available today, it is hard to argue that the essential functions of the job cannot be done remotely. However, many managers complain that associates who work remotely are just not as effective in contributing to the team because they are not physically present for informal communication during a workday. They are “out of sight, out of mind,” and harder to reach when small issues arise. How can my company articulate the importance of  being present with the team? Can a company ever justify that this could create an “undue hardship”?

Accommodation experts Jenny Haykin and Tom Sproger explain how to review work-at-home requests, including informal assessment of “undue hardship” on the employer.

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