HRSINGAPORE Community Discussions

WFH during SHN


Dear HR Community Subscribers,

We have a staff who made an overseas trip to visit her granddaughter who she was not able to see for a year since her birth.

Upon her return, she was put on the mandatory Stay Home Notice (SHN) for 14 days.

Since the trip was personal do we ask her to Work From Home (WFM) during the SHN?

Or is SHN considered as annual leave or no pay leave in your organisation?

We are a charitable organisation.

Thank you for your advice.




HR Poll: How do classify SHN after a personal trip in your organisation?

WFM: 40.63%

Take annual leave (AL): 23.96%

Take no pay leave if no AL: 33.33%

Not sure: 2.08%




Depending on the exigencies of the nature of work, the company may exercise discretion to allow her to work from SHN; this will also give the staff time to catch on her work during her leave of absences and to attend to urgent work. - Adeline

Our company policy for the current COVID-19 situation is: If an employee travels overseas for personal reasons against MOH's advisory, we will require the employee to take AL (or NPL (if already exhausted all her AL) and stay away from the company for 14 days even if the authority does not require SHN. - SKL

She can WFH during her SHN if she is staying alone. I suggest HL instead of AL/NPL, a win-win for both parties. - Florence

I think it depends on the situation but in my company, when it is a normal situation, the employee is asked to WFH. Of course, there are special cases. But in the case aforementioned, I believe that the employee is able to WFH. - Nathalie

We would have discussed all the leave matters with her prior to her trip and document what been discussed and agreed upon. Given the risk she might be exposed to, even insurance coverage would be discussed. Since it was neither a business trip nor essential travel, the staff should bear the 14 days SHN with her annual leave (AL) or unpaid leave if AL is exhausted. - Cher

If staff not possible to WFH then staff will have to take leave. - Hazel

If the staff is able to WFH then we will treat it as they are working. However, if staff is not able to WFH then they have to apply for annual leave or no pay leave. - Munjit

If her work allows her to WFH, then she can WFH. But if not, she will take annual leave. There should be a mutual agreement before she travels overseas on a personal trip actually. - Rozita

My company has set a policy that if travel for personal reasons is required during this period, staff have to bear all costs and take annual leave. If they were originally able to work from home because of the nature of their job, then during quarantine in Singapore, they can consider it as WFH status and must continue to work during quarantine. Otherwise, it will be annual leave/no pay leave. - Besey

By default, we will allow our staff to work from home regardless of whether they traveled for business or personal reasons, as our IT setup fully allows them to do so without disruption. If this is a challenge for your staff/company technologically. try to look if at least the minimum can be enabled to allow her to work from home. If left with no other resort, by the book it will be annual leave first before no pay leave. Or up to your organisation to exercise compassion if it wishes to. - Kris

Depends on the situation. Can the staff can work outside the office? If not, you can discuss the leave arrangement with her. - Kat

In my organization, we allow the staff to WFH during the SHN. - Gillian

Logically, if the employee's job function can WFH & he/she is working while serving his/her SHN, then treat it as working - no leave required. For my company, we have established procedures such that when an employee is back in Singapore serving SHN, the company does not require the employee to apply for leave, when he/she job function can WFH. - Junny

Dear HR Community Colleagues, For our organization, we are in Petrochemicals / Oil and Gas, and currently, we are allowing our staff to WFH if they are serving out their SHN. Thank you.  - Maurice

It is very clear - unless it is an emergency within the family and a trip has been made for the emergency, it could be considered as WFM during SHN. Now, in this case, it was not an emergency trip and was more personal desire and wish to visit granddaughter, it should be either be considered as Annual Leave or No pay leave. - Sreejata

Stay Home Notice - is a restriction to the mobility of the staff. If she is still working from home, there is no reason for the company to ask the staff to take leave or even no pay leave. - Carol

If the work can be performed remotely, then let the employee be on WFH if not consider SHN on annual leave or no pay leave. - Arthi

In our company depends on the job role. Those can work remotely we allow WFH. And for those who are not, they are to apply for annual leave. - Rebecca

For personal purposes, the SHN should utilize AL or unpaid if no more AL. Of course, if the company and the staff had a mutual agreement, can let her WFH during SHN since the SHN not due to illness. So staff can save her AL or lesser unpaid leave and no need to find other staff to cover her duties. - YY

The trip is personal and not required for business purposes. - Katherine

In our organisation, we will request the staff to WFH, otherwise, we will consume her AL and then NPL if AL is inadequate for the SHN. - Vivien

Our company will base on staff job scope, those unable to work remote/WFH will deduct AL/Unpaid leave. - Jenny

Regardless the trip was personal or business - upon return, unless she is unwell then I see no reason why she cannot WFH to serve SHN; unless her job requires her physical presence (such as a cook, a cleaner, or security guard, etc). Current technology gives us the flexibility to work from anywhere. I'd go with compassion and let the staff keep her annual leave. - Halima

Depending on their job scope. If the position is unable to WFH, staff will need to take AL/NPL. Otherwise with the shared arrangement of 50/50 WFH & AL/NPL. - Evelyn


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