Many organizations are flexible when it comes to working from home when you’re feeling sick. In fact, many companies encourage you to take a sick day or a remote work day when you’re feeling under the weather.
Three steps to creating a work-from-home email request
The last thing the company wants is an outbreak of influenza taking out the entire sales staff. So, when you feel that tickle in the back of your throat and your temperature starts to register triple digits in degrees Fahrenheit, it’s time to draft that work-from-home email. Here are a few tips and a sample letter to get you started:
Do it early
Most office viruses can be spread before your symptoms peak and well after you’re feeling better. If you feel contagious, stay home and take it easy. Nap when you’re tired and work when you’re feeling up to it. Check out these six common office illnesses and their contagious periods to learn more about when you should just stay home.
Inform your core group
A note to your supervisor is useful for Human Resources’ records, but extending the message to colleagues you work with day in and day out allows you to set the expectation that work coming from your end may be delayed.
Make it simple
Save the graphic details and stick to providing contact details and noting next steps your group can take to cover you while you’re out.
Sample work-from-home email template
Here's an example work-from-home email template:
I’m starting to show some signs that I’m coming down with ________________. If it is what I think it is, I want to keep it out of the office, so I’ll be working from home for the next few days. I’ll still be reachable by email, and you can always call me on Lifesize if you need me.
Another sample work-from-home email template
Here’s a more generic email template for you to use for when you’d like to some more focused work-from-home time:
I’m going to go heads down on this project and work from home to really focus. Feel free to reach out if you need anything from me. I’ll be online and available!
When it's appropriate to work from home
Thankfully, home-based work is becoming more common due to the nature of cloud-connected teams and the ability for online work to be done from anywhere. The number of telecommuting remote workers has increased by 115% in the last decade and more than half of workers have conducted video calls for work from their homes at least once. Here are a few scenarios where you should consider turning your home or apartment into your home office for the day to help reduce the spread of the office flu:
You're coughing, sneezing or contagious in any way
The pressure to always be in the office can be overwhelming, resulting in 9 out of 10 workers admitting to coming to work with cold or flu-like symptoms. But in reality, most employers would rather you take a sick day than feel obligated to bring your illness into the office. The trick is knowing the common contagious periods for illnesses so you can justify when to work from home when you’re not so sick that you can’t work.
Everyone around you is sick
Flu season can have a snowball effect around the office — once one person gets a slight cough and body ache, everyone starts getting a cough and body ache. Don’t risk catching what your coworkers have! If your work-from-home policy allows, call in, work from home and save yourself the sick day downtime. Just because your team members are sick doesn’t mean you have to suffer too!
You have a family matter to attend to
Maybe this time around your kids or spouse is sick instead of you. Having to juggle being there for your family and being available for your team at work is something we all deal with. Do your company a favor by preventing the spread of germs floating around the office — video conferencing technology makes being able to take your calls from home and still taking care of your family easy.
You need a break
Presenteeism is a feeling of obligation to come to work even if you aren’t fully functioning — whether due to an illness, injury or just plain exhaustion. If you need a break, many employees find it beneficial to take advantage of work-from-home days to focus on projects without getting distracted by impromptu meetings or side conversations.
What are the advantages of working from home?
How do you negotiate working from home?
By doing your research, having a clear plan on how you would go about working remotely and asking your supervisor in person, you can position yourself for success. After you do get the okay to work from home, make sure to do your best in building trust and reliability during those first few days by overcommunicating, being flexible and proactive, and being more visible. You’re setting an example for how working from home can be a success for your company, so make sure you do your best to make a lasting impression!
What is the best video conferencing solution for a home office?
The camera built into your laptop or phone can make and receive calls just fine, but if you’re a full-time work-from-home employee, you might be interested in setting up a dedicated video conferencing system to help build out a more productive home office. Check out our full post for three video conferencing solutions for your home office.
Work from Home with Lifesize Video Conferencing
For too long, businesses have settled for “good enough” video conferencing. We’re here to let you know that you deserve much better. Your video conferencing solution at work shouldn’t be worse than the 10-year-old backup TV you keep in your spare bedroom. Video at 720p and compressed audio aren’t good enough — not for your business, not for your first impression with clients and not for your mission-critical relationships. Lifesize was the first to HD more than a decade ago, and we’re the only solution for 4K video and full-motion 4K content sharing.
Schedule an interactive Lifesize demo to learn how video conferencing technology can help you stay connected even when you need to work from home.