Do you have employees who work from home? Whether your business is large or small, you likely do. Between 2005 and 2018, the number of employees who work remotely jumped by 173%[LZ1] . The pandemic has made working from home not only an option, but a necessity for many employers. Remote employees can save your company money, as you’ll probably pay lower overhead costs and may be able to operate with a smaller footprint.
However, enabling remote work can have drawbacks. For example, it may be more challenging to manage remote staff. Your employees might find it more difficult to collaborate or stay connected with the rest of their team — or struggle with feeling isolated when working from home.
Another factor is the potential liability your business may face because of your remote employees. For example, what happens if an employee gets injured while working from home? What if there is a data breach? What if your employee drops his or her laptop or it is stolen? Your business should have insurance to cover these kinds of issues.
Most states require employers to have workers’ compensation insurance for their employees — whether they work remotely or not. Workers’ compensation covers medical bills and lost wages for employees who get sick or injured at work. If you have an employee who becomes injured doing work and during work hours, your workers’ compensation policy should cover him or her.
Another potential issue is that of a cyberattack or data breach. Using an encrypted virtual private network (VPN) and up-to-date firewall and antivirus software can help keep employee and company data secure. Employees should have strong passwords and change them regularly. Additionally, they should keep their computers and mobile devices locked when not in use.
While these steps could help reduce the risk of a data breach, the possibility remains. That’s why it’s critical to have cyber liability insurance. First-party cyber liability insurance covers the damages that result from a data breach on your company’s systems. Third-party cyber liability insurance protects you if a data breach compromises your clients’ information or systems.
There are many benefits to having employees work remotely. Professionals have more freedom, and many prefer the option to be able to work from home. Yet the potential drawbacks and liability should be considered when having remote personnel.
The accompanying resource, courtesy of B2Z Insurance shares some recent statistics about remote employees and the types of liability from which businesses should protect themselves.