How to Support Employees During the COVID-19 Outbreak

How to Support Employees During The COVID-19 Outbreak

As many organizations and their employees are faced with disruptions and uncertainty while the coronavirus pandemic evolves, it can be hard to know what steps to take.

It’s important to rely on or implement support programs that are designed to help both your company and your workforce to navigate these unprecedented circumstances and the new challenges that come with them.

Here are some programs that can help improve morale, keep your workforce working and support them and their families during this time.

  1. Remote Work Support
    As employees head home to work remotely, possibly indefinitely, there are new challenges they face. In addition to any technical support or equipment required, they may also need support to help them adjust, especially those who have rarely teleworked, or those who perhaps never have. In order to make remote working a success, it’s important to provide employees with guidance to adapt to a different way of working. You can offer best practices on how to set up a workspace, create new routines and manage time, communicate and connect effectively, lead a remote team, navigate the boundaries between work and personal life and cope with isolation. Setting them up for success can make working remote work.
  1. Backup Care
    As more and more schools are closing, caregivers are falling ill or staying home, employees are finding themselves in need of reliable temporary care for children and aging loved ones. Offering company subsidized backup care is crucial in the face of these disruptions so employees can continue to focus on their day-to-day responsibilities and remain productive. In the last few weeks, we’ve seen many of our clients rely heavily on this program during this time, with an 800% increase in utilization in one week, or said another way, basically two months of volume in less than a week. We’ve also seen clients either increase their available care allotment or implement a new program entirely.
  1. Support for Working Parents
    Many employees may now be taking on a new role as teacher. As schools close and parents are forced to homeschool for the foreseeable future, they may be left stressed and scrambling to find the resources to keep their children from falling behind academically. We’ve seen many of our clients offer educational tools, resources and guidance to keep kids learning. It’s also helpful to share guidance on how to explain the situation to children as this can be a confusing, scary time for them as well.
  1. Mental Health Support
    In the face of all this change, uncertainty and frightening statistics, employees may be experiencing new and heightened levels of stress, anxiety and emotional health concerns. That’s why it’s important that employers offer Employee Assistance Programs to provide access to confidential counseling. It’s also imperative to share emotional health resources and information to help employees recognize if they have an issue and, if so, how to cope, recover and build their mental strength.
  1. Financial Guidance
    With finances being the number one stressor before this pandemic, now more than ever it’s vital that employees receive the financial guidance that can help them protect themselves and their loved ones from the impact of coronavirus, both in the long and short term.
  1. Benefit Communications
    It’s a common challenge most employers face. They’ve implemented a comprehensive employee benefit program, but many employees are still unaware of all that’s available to them, hurting utilization and ROI. Outside of open enrollment, it may be hard to hold their attention to communicate. In these times, it’s a good opportunity to remind your workforce of all the programs available to them. They’re likely looking for the guidance and will be appreciative of all the ways they’re being supported. Plus, keeping the lines of communication open with your employees can offer them feelings of reassurance and security during times of isolation.

While employers can’t completely do away with their employee’s challenges or fears surrounding coronavirus, they can offer the best support possible. While the realities of the present are quickly changing, it’s a comfort to know that there are things you’ve already implemented or can easily implement to help your employees during these turbulent times.

To learn more about programs that support your employees we’re here to help. Contact us here or call us at (866) 675-3751.