3 Things to Consider Adding to Your Employee Handbook Thanks to COVID

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It’s safe to say that COVID-19 has had many lasting impacts on the way we work and live. One area you may not have thought about is your company’s employee handbook. By now, it’s time that you make some updates to address the new normal.

Here are some areas to consider updating in your employee handbook thanks to the pandemic:

Updated Health and Safety Guidelines

If there’s one area of the employee handbook that makes sense to update after a pandemic, it’s the health and safety section. If employees will be assembling in physical workspaces, add guidance on social distancing, hand washing/sanitizing, face-mask wearing, and other applicable points. Consider adding capacity limits to certain areas. And add guidance on maintaining a clean and sanitized workplace, making it clear that it’s everyone’s responsibility.

Remote Work Policy

Remote work has become much more common now that COVID-19 forced many out of the office and into their homes. Your company should have clear guidelines on what is expected of remote workers, who can and can’t work remotely, communication standards, equipment guidelines, and more. Technical specifications may be necessary if you give your employees computer equipment to use at home. And don’t forget about time zone accommodations, online hour guidelines, and privacy concerns when using distributed equipment.

Conduct and Behavior Guidelines

Of course, your handbook already contains plenty of language about non-harassment and non-discrimination policies. You might want to add to those sections, though, to include statements addressing the harassment or discrimination of employees who have had COVID-19 or are showing symptoms of illness. Of course, it’s also essential that you outline clear guidelines on how to manage sick employees as well as those who are suspected to be sick, whether it’s mandatory at-home quarantining or paid leave.

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Posted in Managers on Sep 10, 2021