You just finished making yourself some coffee and are walking over to your desk when you suddenly hear a commotion. You and your colleague give each other puzzled looks and go find out what all the ruckus is about. You stare in disbelief at an enraged co-worker being dragged away by security!
As waves of COVID-19 cross the country and state and local stay-at-home orders are phased in and out (and in again), employers have big decisions to make about not only when employees should return to work, but also how.
COVID-19 has heightened awareness of our health and safety like nothing else in recent memory, and it has left many to worry about the role that their surroundings play in terms of cleanliness and protection. One of the biggest fears that many are facing is the prospect of returning to work mid-COVID-19.
In a CBS News poll, 70% of respondents reported the top national priority should be to “try to slow the spread of coronavirus by keeping people home and social distancing, even if the economy is hurt in the short term.” In essence, the survey reveals a real-time conversation playing out in which many people are left speculating what the return-to-work plans will be in the coming months.
Some employers have already jumped in and called employees back to work, while some have extended work-at-home policies through the end of 2020. There is no one right answer for every employer. But if you do decide to bring employees back, or due to your industry your workplace never closed in the first place, you should be prepared to diligently implement the changing best practices to reduce workers’ exposure to COVID-19 in the coming months, or perhaps even year.