What is 'homeworking'?

'Homeworking' is simply doing your job from home. It is a method of working which can be relevant to many jobs.

There is no legal definition of working from home, but the essential feature is the use of information technology to enable people to work away from the office. This could apply to people working full-time or part-time at home, those dividing their time between home and the office, and mobile workers who use their home as an administrative base.

Working from home is growing. Four million people are now homeworkers, according to TUC analysis of government statistics from 2015. Developments in modern technology, most notably faster Internet connections, mean that homeworking is now an option for a large numbers of workers. This figure is in fact probably a significant understatement as it only counts people who spend at least half their working time at home. There are millions more people who work from home one or two days a week or just on an ad hoc basis. Further analysis by EU research agency Eurofound found that 'part-time' homeworking is on average about four times more common than 'full-time' homeworking.

There are many benefits to homeworking for both employers and employees. It can enable companies and public service organisations to modernise the way work is organised. It can also help employees better reconcile work and home life. However, there are a range of issues to be considered when moving to working from home and it is important that homeworking is introduced in such a way as to benefit both employers and employees.

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.