4 Ways to Support Employees Returning to Work During COVID-19
As many businesses across Ontario fully or partially reopen while the COVID-19 pandemic continues, they face the extraordinary challenge of keeping workers safe. While following health guidelines is an important step toward reopening, employers may also want to consider additional ways to support employees in this difficult time.
The old way to conduct business is out, and a “new normal” is on the horizon.
Here are 4 ways to support employees returning to work during COVID-19
1. Enhanced Sanitation and a Road Map for Physical Distancing
One of the most important ways to support employees during reopening is to follow best practices surrounding sanitation, social distancing, and physical distancing. Employers should think about how to utilize their workspaces differently, with at least six feet of space between employees and, if possible, installing physical barriers to help prevent the transmission of germs.
Other ways businesses can improve cleanliness include:
- Deep clean workspaces each evening.
- Place hand sanitizer stations throughout the workspace.
- Provide free masks to employees.
- Provide free disinfectant wipes.
2. A Welcome Back Kit
Consider creating a welcome back kit with post-pandemic essentials.
Some things to include:
- Hand sanitizer
- Disinfecting wipes
- Face masks
- Water bottles to discourage the use of shared glassware
- A personal mug
- Tips and tricks for efficient cleaning and disinfecting
3. Mental Health Support
The coronavirus crisis has taken a toll on the mental health of Ontario residents, especially for frontline workers. However, employees in all sectors can find themselves facing anxiety — whether they are worried about contracting the coronavirus, prolonged self-isolation, revenue loss and/or family and friends who are sick. To help counter this, employers can consider providing free mental health support services. Furthermore, employers can support employees struggling with stress and anxiety by encouraging them to seek covid-19 counselling services with virtual doctors.
4. Access to Additional Resources
To further support employees during these challenging times, consider giving them access to additional resources. Some ideas include:
- Meditation apps or podcasts that can provide ways to relieve anxiety
- Books that can teach individuals how to cope with stress
- Access to digital resources with self-care tips and best practices
- Material on how to practice resilience
- Access to guided yoga or deep breathing exercises
As the working world changes due to disruptive forces, organizations will need to become more adaptable to change. They need their employees to be flexible but more importantly they will need them to feel confident returning to work knowing that their best interest is at heart.
Talk to a doctor about mental health support, anxiety counselling or covid-19 counselling online.