Working from Home tips for Candidates – Security

Protect your personal data (tips from our Partners at Pobal.ie):

Devices

• Take extra care that devices are not lost or misplaced.
• Make sure all devices have necessary updates- including operating systems and software/antivirus updates.
• Ensure your computer, laptop etc. is used in a safe location where you can keep sight of it and minimise who else can view the screen.
• Lock your device if you have to leave it unattended for any reason.
• Make sure your devices are turned off, locked, or stored carefully when not in use.
• Use effective access controls; multi-factor authentication, strong passwords etc.

Emails

• Follow any applicable policies in your organisation around the use of email.
• Use work email accounts rather than personal ones for work-related emails. If you have to use personal email make sure contents and attachments are encrypted and avoid using personal or confidential data in subject lines.
• Before sending an email, double check that you are sending it to the correct recipient.
• Covid-19 phishing scams – attackers are taking advantage of the pandemic by sending phishing emails. These can do real harm to your organisation. If you receive such an email, evaluate it and verify email with the sender before interacting with it.

Network Access

• Where possible only use your organisation’s trusted networks and comply with any organisational rules and procedures about network access, login and, data sharing.
• If working without network access, ensure locally stored data is backed up securely.

Paper Records

• Where working remotely with paper records, take steps to ensure their security and confidentiality, such as by keeping them locked in a filing cabinet or drawer when not in use, disposing of them securely (e.g. shredding), and making sure they are not left somewhere they could be misplaced or stolen.
• If you’re dealing with records that contain special categories of personal data, you should take extra care and only remove such records from a secure location where it is strictly necessary. See https://www.dataprotection.ie/en/organisations/know-your-obligations/lawful-processing/specialcategory-data for more details on special categories of data.
• Where possible, you should keep a written record of which records and files have been taken home, in order to maintain good data access and governance practices.

Working from Home tips for Candidates – Wellbeing

Breaks:

• Take regular breaks as you would on-site in their entirety, don’t cut them short. Breaks serve an important function in improving concentration and focus, and allow us to stand and stretch when spending time working at a desk.
• Spend lunchtime doing something immersive, for e.g. do some jobs around the house or cook dinner etc rather than putting the TV on, as it helps to keep the brain in focus.

Reach out for support:

• Don’t’ be afraid to increase the frequency of check-ins with your managers and Specialisterne staff should you have any questions/ need support, so that you don’t feel isolated and can remain productive
• Outside of working hours keep in touch with friends/colleagues on non-work-related topics so as not to feel isolated.

Don’t burn yourself out:

• While it is really important that you are strict with yourself and stick to your schedule, don’t over-do it as burn out often happens when people forget to finish work and end up working extra hours.
• If possible, get some fresh air e.g. in the garden or go for a short walk outside of working hours

Working from Home tips for Candidates – Workspace

It is important that you look after yourself while working from home during this time. When we work from home it is easy to get into bad habits and become immersed in work, and this can be counter-productive. Or you may experience the opposite and find it hard to focus and remain as motivated as you would on-site. To avoid this, we suggest a few things around expectations and best practices for remote working:

Workspace:

• Candidates need to have a clear workspace with comfortable seating and no distractions. If you find something is distracting you (e.g. personal mobile phone), this should be put away during working hours.

Routine:

• It is very important to keep a regular routine while working from home. Try to get up at the same time as normal and get dressed/have breakfast and then go for a little walk in the place of your normal commute to the office.
• Set a schedule and stick to it. This might mean setting an alarm as a reminder.
• Your work day hours are the same as normal, and candidates should still take his/her lunchbreak as normal.