The biggest question right now is; "When can we return to work following the COVID-19 shut down?" The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has interrupted many businesses across the country. While it’s unclear how long COVID-19 will continue to affect organizations, many employers are looking to the future of employees returning to work.
Echoing the sentiments of public health officials, a return to normalcy won’t be like flipping a switch, but rather a gradual effort. In preparation for reopening your business and asking employees to come back to work, it’s imperative that your company thoughtfully constructs a return to work plan for its employees to keep everyone healthy and safe following the COVID-19 pandemic.
What’s the benefit of a Return to Work Plan?
A return to work plan is typically created to help reintegrate workers who have been injured or have been on leave. There are many benefits of return to work plans for both the employer and the employee. And it’s been proven that employees who go through return to work plans are able to get back to work quicker than those who do not.
The benefits of return to work plans are undeniable. While these plans are typically customized on an individual basis, you can use the basics of a return to work plan to build your company’s approach to asking employees to return to work following the COVID-19 pandemic.
COVID-19 Return to Work Plans
COVID-19 has caused many businesses to shut down or transition their employees to work from home, disrupting daily work life for many. As stay-at-home regulations are scaled back and all businesses are allowed to resume as normal, your employees will be asked to come back to work. While they may not be coming back from an injury or leave, you need to have a plan in place for all employees to safely and successfully return to work.
While you may need to tailor your organization’s COVID-19 return to work plan to employees’ specific needs (e.g., childcare arrangements, care giving responsibilities and health issues), having a generalized plan in place can help you safely reopen your business.
Your COVID-19 return to work plan should include the following:
- Anticipated return to work date
- Disinfecting and cleaning measures
- Social distancing protocol
- Employee screening procedures
- Employee safety training
- Mental health considerations
- Process for individualized requests
- And more…
For a more detailed outline of the many things you and your business will need to consider click here
Please note that this article should be used for informational purposes only and should not supersede applicable state or local guidance. Additionally, please review any workplace-specific considerations, which could be more involved depending on the industry you operate in, when drafting your return to work plan.
This post is part of Clark-Mortenson’s COVID-19 preparedness guidelines, each of which contains a piece of helpful advice from the Business Solutions Team at Clark-Mortenson, follow our blog for more!
Looking for more information about COVID and your business go to COVID-19 Resource Center
Check out the CDC website for more information