Remote work is the new normal for many businesses. Working from home can increase some employees’ morale and save companies money on building expenses.
To continue business as usual, project management and communication apps like Trello, Slack and Microsoft Teams can help the workplace remain connected from miles apart.
However, many office life issues can still occur over these digital channels, like sexual harassment. Depending on the size of a business’s workforce, tracking and monitoring every employees’ behavior can be challenging. Because of this, employers should adjust their strategy to deal with digital sexual harassment.
What does online sexual misconduct look like?
Remote work can stop perpetrators from groping and kissing their victims. But harassment can take many forms. Digital harassment could be sending sexually inappropriate content, posting discriminatory comments in team group chats or gossiping about a co-worker’s sex life. All of these actions can create a hostile work environment.
What can employers do to reinforce their policies?
Employers have a duty of care towards their workers to protect them from sexual misconduct. Because of this, now is the time for them to reshape and reinforce policies that fit the current work climate. Here are a few ways they can do so:
- Remind employees that a respectful culture is crucial now more than ever.
- Provide digital channels that are safe for reporting inappropriate misconduct.
- Reinforce consequences for violating company sexual harassment policies.
- If necessary, implement a work from home dress code.
Making changes can require assistance
Working from home is the norm for the foreseeable future. And while employers adjust different aspects of their business to maintain a safe workplace culture, they may not want to go through these changes alone. Luckily, an experienced employment law attorney can help employers draft harassment policies that work for them.