With the outbreak of the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), businesses have been inevitably affected due to fears of the virus. To date, as of 25 February 2020, there are 3 confirmed cases and 2 cases have been discharged.
To keep your employees protected from the virus and to ensure that your business can operate at such times, here are some suggestions that you can consider that may be beneficial for your company.
1. Business Continuity Plans
With the virus causing businesses of all sizes to be adversely affected, businesses must have a BCP to ensure that workflow and business processes are not disrupted. For example, some companies have adopted a Flexi-reporting schedule. Meaning, employees can choose to report and leave at a later time to avoid crowds on public transports. Employers can also split employees into two groups and allow one team to work from home to minimize the risk of a community spread.
Meanwhile, retailers that have been affected by customers who are afraid to step out of their house have begun partnering with delivery companies like Ninja Van to have their goods and commodities delivered to customer’s doorsteps.
Due to the disruptions caused by the virus, this is a good time for businesses to really understand the strengths and deficiencies in their respective BCP. A robust BCP will enable business operations to remain running throughout the period of slow economic activity. It is thus crucial to adapt your business model to fit the climate.
2. Do away with traditional work processes
With the introduction of cloud-based Human Resource Management Solutions (HRMS), companies are able to handle HR and Payroll matters in the comfort of their own homes. With regard to the current Coronavirus situation, this is paramount in the event where the DORSCON level is raised to red, possibly mandating businesses to employ their respective BCP.
By having an HRMS platform that is cloud-based, HR processes such as payroll and claims are not tied to a physical location and can be accessed anywhere and at any time. For example, payroll processes remain undisrupted through the automated calculation and provision of employees’ pay. Employees can also clock in and out at home by taking a selfie for verification purposes.
By empowering employees to take charge of their own HR processes (e.g. checking of leave balance and updating personal profiles), employees may feel that the management trusts their people, which in turn may foster a stronger and healthier relationship between employees and their employers.
3. Take preventive measures
To protect employees from the risk of a community spread, there should be regular temperature screenings to identify individuals who may potentially be sick. Ensure that employees who are sick remain at home or seek a doctor.
If business processes will not be affected, enable staff to work from home. By allowing your employees to work from home, you are minimizing the contact that they have with people, therefore reducing the risk of contracting the virus.
4. Stay Calm
For the management, it is important to allay any fears/concerns that your employees have. With peace of mind, your employees will work productively and effectively.
In the unfortunate event that your employee has to be quarantined, it is paramount that the company offers its full support.
5. Postpone large-scale activities
It would be wise to reschedule meetings and large-scale events to minimize contact between people. If possible, you can consider alternatives like online services such as skype to conduct meetings and discussions.
6. Stay updated
a. Keep a lookout for updates on the situation by following trust-worthy news
b. Here are some links from verifiable sources to get the latest update:
Here at JuzTalent, the health and well-being of our employees are of the utmost importance. To keep our employees safe, here is what we have done.
1. Daily temperature checks happen in the morning and afternoon to ensure employees are healthy and well
2. Split our departments into two to minimize the risk of community spreading while ensuring that business will run normally in the event either of the teams is incapacitated
3. Prepared a ready supply of face masks should employees need it when they display symptoms of infection
4. Employees can request to stay home and do their work should they feel unwell
5. Implemented flexible working hours such that employees are able to avoid rush-hour crowds on public transports
During such times of crisis, the need for all nationalities to band together is more important than ever. If you encounter someone who is in need of help, please do not hesitate to offer assistance. And remember — stay safe and stay alert!