As America flattens the curve on COVID-19, employees are slowly returning back to work. Once businesses reopen for good and we get back to a feeling of normalcy, it'll be essential to note the lessons learned throughout the pandemic to plan for any future problems.
Sick employees need to stay home.
There has never been a more moving example of sick employees needing to stay home than the coronavirus pandemic. Americans are notoriously bad at taking time off work due to illness. According to a Robert Half study, one-third of employees polled said they always go to work when they have a cold or flu symptoms.
COVID-19 demonstrated how dangerous it can be to show up to work sick. The unfortunate reality is that many employees can't afford to stay home if they're feeling ill. However, even before the coronavirus started impacting America, new paid sick leave laws were being passed in states around the country. Businesses should anticipate more mandatory paid sick leave laws in the wake of coronavirus.
Remote work is possible.
Before COVID-19, employees were enthusiastically asking about working from home part- or full-time. Some employers were hesitant; could they count on their employees to work from their living rooms, bedrooms, and home offices? As states issued stay-at-home orders, companies were left with little choice but to send their workers home. Those fortunate enough to stay employed began working from home full time, and it worked. Employees were still able to complete their responsibilities despite not being in the office, and if you manage your remote team well, production and morale likely remained high.
Not all businesses can operate with a fully remote team. But some who can, like Twitter and Square, are sticking with the trend. We were all dumped into a remote work reality, but thankfully, it seems to be successful.
Communication is valuable
A lot of businesses realized their communication processes were inefficient once the pandemic was in full swing. If you've adopted a new plan, channel, or strategy, make sure to continue to use it effectively. If you're still looking for a better communication process, it may be time to test your email and chat channels to see how quickly you can disseminate important information. If you don't have a plan, consider the following:
What steps did you take to notify employees about critical news?
How did the pandemic affect your business?
What did you need to do to establish a work from home policy?
Review what worked and didn't during the outbreak and create a plan to address any future issues.
Prepare for the worst.
Save that penny for a rainy day. The return to profitability could be a long road for some, but as your business regains its footing, consider setting aside portions of revenue for another "rainy day." These portions may seem small, but they may make a huge difference in riding out another unpredictable and lasting economic hardship over time. If you can still afford to offer a retirement plan, it may be appropriate to recommend the same practice to your employees. For those not participating in a 401(k) plan, this circumstance is an excellent example of why it's essential to save for things you can't anticipate.
Adaptability is the key to success.
Businesses able to adapt and shift to market conditions have a better chance of success. Encouraging innovation and adaptability has always been essential to the health of an organization, but COVID-19 clearly illustrated just how beneficial these abilities are. Keep these things in mind as we wade cautiously into our new world of work.
Dominion provides a paperless platform for all things payroll and HR. As your employees log hours, request time off, and undergo open enrollment, Dominion's payroll automatically updates these changes accordingly. Employees can complete new hire documents electronically, and administrators can handle hours worked, performance reviews, and more from one integrated platform. Request a demo to see how Dominion can help your business!
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