As we enter a new era of workplace safety and security following the COVID-19 lockdown, employees should be able to confidently return to work, onsite or remotely, and administrators must have the peace of mind that they are complying with the new requirements. Getting back to work in the office while keeping employees and visitors protected from the current pandemic should be of the utmost importance to all employers.
As many businesses around the globe begin to reopen, it is imperative for employers to develop new policies and regulations to bring employees back to work safely, giving careful thought to schedules, seating configurations, visitor policies, contact tracing, elevator usage, food delivery, and much more. Many believe that these safety requirements will be necessary well into the future.
The most common employee safety requests closely match the CDC recommended guidelines to mitigate the spread of infectious disease:
It is imperative that employers communicate to employees how such measures are being implemented, what the timeline is, and how they will be monitored and enforced. It is also important that protocols are updated and communicated to the workforce as the situation evolves.
While workforce reentry includes thought-out logistical and operational planning, employers must also take into account the impact of COVID-19 on individuals’ emotional and psychological health. Anxiety is near-universal now, a natural reaction to unnatural circumstances and an uncertain future. Many employees are concerned their employers will bring them back to work prematurely, not to mention their position and future of the company that they work for. The anxiety generated by these circumstances can yield negative results such as concentration problems, fatigue, increased alcohol, tobacco and drug consumption, and the worsening of existing health problems, all of which can potentially impact job performance.
In all of the planning to keep employees physically safe, employers can also reduce re-entry anxiety by making employee’s well-being their top priority. Share accurate, timely, and transparent information with your team, take swift action to implement recommended public health measures, train managers and colleagues on how to properly support employees, and offer flexible PTO and sick leave. Your attention or inattention to all aspects of your employees’ well-being during this time will have reputational consequences for years to come.
The doctors and staff at Trinity Occupational Health in Stockton and Elk Grove are here to answer any questions or concerns you may have regarding managing a safe return to work and we look forward to assisting you with any of your needs.
Important Notice: If your emergency occurs after regular business hours, please visit your nearest emergency room. For life threatening injury or illness, call 911 or visit your nearest emergency room.