We tuned in to a webinar presented by HR.com. It covered topics employers should consider as they return from COVID-19 shutdowns.
About The Webinar
The webinar focused on California employers but was relevant to organizations throughout the United States. It broke down “Return To Work” plans into three phases:
Phase 1: Continue to encourage remote work, minimize business travel and enforce strong social distancing programs at workplaces. They recommended implementing stronger policies for individuals who interact with vulnerable populations.
Phase 2: Continue to enforce social distancing. Business travel can resume as long as participants follow all safety protocols.
Phase 3: Return to normal business operations.
A webinar presenter talked about bringing people back into the workplace. He suggested taking several steps before this occurs. Highlights included:
• Creating written documentation about health, safety and social distancing practices.
• Establishing a COVID-19 response team.
• Keeping up with state and local shutdown orders.
• Ensuring you have ample supplies available (hand sanitizer, masks, gloves, etc).
• Printing signs that relay new rules, such as no more than 4 people are allowed in any area at the same time.
Cleaning and Disinfecting
As people return to the workplace, maintaining a sanitary environment is more important than ever. During their webinar, presenters made several suggestions to help, including:
• Clean common surfaces regularly. This includes workstations, phones, doorknobs, handrails and counters.
• Encourage workers to not borrow or share pens and other supplies.
• Place disposable wipes throughout the premises.
• Purchase disinfectants that kill viruses.
Another key topic was doing everything possible to keep your team together. They offered suggestions on how to achieve this critical goal:
• Develop a program that builds trust and loyalty. This requires knowing your workforce and understanding what matters to them.
• Provide childcare services if possible.
• Work with employees to help solve problems and address concerns.
• Maintain strong safety protocols.
Backgrounds Online also recommends implementing annual background screenings for everyone on your staff. This demonstrates an ongoing commitment to their safety and well-being. Annual checks can show employers if someone incurs a new criminal record, no longer has a required license or if there are other changes of which they should be aware.
If An Employee Tests Positive
One of the later components of HR.com’s webinar covered what to do if an employee tests positive for COVID-19. They broke this into 3 steps:
1. Talk to the person. Ask when their symptoms began, if they noticed them while at work and if any occurred within 48 hours of being at the workplace.
2. Communicate with everyone who could be affected. If an employee had symptoms within 2 days of being on-site, inform your staff. Do not reveal the person’s identity unless they gave permission. If anyone had close contact with the infected individual, ask them to stay home for 14 days.
3. Disinfect the workplace.
Back To Business
We hope your organization is operating again or will be able to resume soon. When you do, you may need to re-screen employees who are returning following a lengthy furlough or bring on new people to help keep your business moving forward. If so, please contact us for expert assistance.
Our experienced team can help you build custom background screening packages for any position. We’re available Monday through Friday from 5am to 6pm PT.