As some states relax their restrictions on non-essential businesses and daily activities it’s a great time for employers to review their company handbook, and reevaluate their policies, which may need updates for compliance, or even work to create new ones. Of course, it is best to do this before reopening or allowing employees back into the workplace in order to help ensure a compliant and unified company. Below are some recommended steps employers should take as they work to reopen their place of business.
First, ensure you’ve posted the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) poster in a visible place. For anyone working remotely you will need to share it via email or post it in the company intranet or on some other shareable forum. You can download the required poster here.
You will also want to review your hiring practices and policies and revise them as necessary. Things to consider as you complete your review:
- How competitive are your benefits and pay? Take a realistic look at whether you need to up your competitive edge in this area.
- Do you have company-wide alignment on remote interviewing techniques and processes?
- If you are recalling only some workers from furlough or after being laid off, then be sure your process for determining who is being recalled doesn’t discriminate against any group of employees.
Assess and revise your policy for leaves of absence. Make sure you understand how the FFCRA affects your policies and practices. If you had a “use it or lose it” paid time off policy then consider allowing employees extra time to use their hours. Another consideration should be implementing or revising bereavement leave policies. Overall, make sure that employees have visibility to, and a solid understanding of, any leave policies that may apply to them.
Review your telework and/or work from home and childcare policies. Also update your work travel policies in light of any new orders in your state and any new workplace practices being implemented to keep employees and/or customers safe. Finally, review the rehire or reinstatement provisions for your benefit policies for information regarding eligibility and waiting periods.
Once you’ve created or updated your policies the final step is to distribute all the new/revised info to your employees.