While many workplaces have shifted to hybrid setups coming out of the pandemic, employment experts say workers should be cautious about using that added flexibility to work from home when feeling sick.

It’s a situation that some observers of remote work trends predict could become more prevalent as companies increasingly make their hybrid arrangements permanent.

“There is a bit of a return to … people’s comfort level with doing things while not feeling 100 per cent, but that’s not everybody by any means,” said John Trougakos, a University of Toronto professor of organizational behaviour and human resources management.

With a current uptick in COVID-19 cases in Canada linked to two new variants, along with the usual cold and flu season, employment lawyer Brittany Taylor said it’s crucial that both employers and employees take the time now to consider how to handle sick days.

“I’m expecting as we get into the fall these issues are going to be more at the forefront,” said Taylor, a partner at Rudner Law.

The growing popularity of hybrid work arrangements has been documented throughout the past year. As of May, 41 per cent of Canadian workers that were considered remote had hybrid schedules, splitting time between on-site and at-home, up from one-quarter a year earlier, according to a report released last month by Indeed Canada.


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