One of the most difficult aspects of running a business in the covid-19 period, is facilitating employees’ return to work in a way that supports employee health and wellbeing. Taking the necessary steps to ensure this is crucial in reorienting the business to operate under the current situation in a way that is both effective and safe.

Having a strategy in place for the return to work goes a long way to assure employees that the necessary steps will be taken to provide a safe environment. In addition to the many new safety regulations and practices which this strategy must address, there are also new operational challenges which will require on-the-go training. So with that said, here are 4 best practices to support your employees’ return.

1. Prepare a re-orientation process

Starting a new job is hard, and we all require an effective onboarding process to get up to speed. The conditions for getting back to work under covid-19 are no different. New challenges, new processes, new regulations. Having a dedicated re-orientation process will provide staff with the information they need to get back to work, and it will also set up the framework for key information to be communicated going forward.

Here, you can answer key questions such as; what are the new regulations we have to follow? How will our shifts change? What should I expect going forward? Answering these key questions goes a long way to provide security for employees and enables them to plan and prepare.

2. Regular communications on new regulations

One of the difficulties of bringing employees back in the current circumstances is the speed with which the regulatory landscape is constantly changing. You may have to provide personal protective equipment (PPE), or there may be additional measures when it comes to cleaning, interacting with customers, or employee hygiene.

To implement these new processes smoothly, it is important to have a communications strategy which is agile and highly effective. This means two things; first, you have to be able to provide employees with the right information at the right time. Secondly, you have to be sure that employees actually get the message.

3. Consider whether cohorting or staggering working hours could work for your team

Many workplaces are now subject to a reduction in the number of personnel who can occupy a space at any given time. However, the work you need to do has anything but diminished proportionally.

Two solutions which have had some success are cohorting of staff, or staggering working hours. What this means is that staff are put in smaller groups, so that they can a) meet new occupancy restrictions and b) limit interactions between groups. This means that transmission can be mitigated across groups, subsequently protecting the wider workforce and community. Doing so can be very helpful but also presents a logistical and organizational challenge for businesses.

4. Boost remote capabilities

Implementing effective training and communications for frontline employees is notoriously difficult. They’re on-the-go, and logging into the company intranet or organizational app is hardly in their natural workflow. To actually implement the above activities, we may need to boost our capabilities so that we can create a highly effective workflow between management and frontline staff.

The keys here are agility, simplicity, and efficacy. To meet the objectives, any new solution needs to provide a great user experience for both managers and frontline employees.

Managers must be able to:

  • Create the right content quickly and easily
  • Reach employees directly (share seamlessly via the familiar channels employees are most attentive to)
  • Get the full picture with an analytics dashboard so you can measure progress and identify knowledge gaps in real time

For employees, the key requirements for a great user experience are:

  • Use of engaging formats (short video or images)
  • On-the-go learning (ability to complete training remotely)
  • Delivery via familiar channels (instant messaging)
  • Opportunity to give feedback and ask questions

To learn more about how instant knowledge sharing can help you get employees back to work safely and in the most effective way visit Bites’ website!

Disclaimer: this article is for general information purposes and does not constitute legal advice.

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