This guidance is intended for planning purposes. Employers and workers should use this planning guidance to help minimize risk levels in workplace settings and to determine any appropriate control measures to implement.

Posting and Policies

Post the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) poster in a visible place. Where employees will remain working from home, send by email or post to Company intraweb or employee website. Review and revise hiring practices and policies:
  • Have staffing needs changed?
  • Do you need to change benefits or pay to become more competitive?
  • Use remote interviewing techniques as much as possible.
  • Update on-boarding practices.
  • If you are recalling only some workers that were laid-off or furloughed, ensure your practices for determining who to recall do not discriminate against any group of employees.

Review and revise leave policies:

  • Know how the FFCRA affects your previous policies and practices.
  • Consider implementing PTO/vacation rollovers, grace periods, and revise guidelines for usage if vacation is forfeited if not used by year end.
  • Consider implementing or revising bereavement leave policies.
  • Ensure that all employees have access to and an understanding of all leave policies that may apply to them.
  • Review and revise work from home and child care policies.
  • Update work travel policies in light of any new orders in your state and any new practices being implemented in the workplace to keep employees/customers safe.
  • Review rehire/reinstate provisions for your benefit policies (eligibility/waiting periods).
  • Distribute all new or revised policies to all employees.

Health and Safety

  • Explain company policies and procedures related to illness, cleaning and disinfecting, and work meetings and travel.
  • Educate employees on how to reduce the spread of COVID-19 at home and at work (follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations).
  • For employees returning to a worksite, make sure they understand what’s expected of them in the workplace. For example, must they wear face masks or face coverings? Will protective items and hand sanitizer be provided? Are workplace hours different? Will you be taking employees’ temperatures each day when they arrive? Is teleworking or staggered shift work allowed/encouraged?
  • Ensure that all employees who are currently ill or have contact with an ill family member stay home (follow CDC recommendations for length of time).
  • If an employee becomes sick at work, send them home.
Promote safe social distancing in the workplace by encouraging employees to:
  • Remain at least 6 feet away from each other.
  • Email, message, call, or video call rather than meeting face to face.
  • Clean computer equipment, desktops, phones, and workstations often.
  • Provide hand sanitizer, cleaning supplies, and face masks or face coverings (where appropriate/ necessary) and no-touch disposal receptacles.
  • Discourage handshaking.
  • Place posters throughout the business to encourage social distancing and hand hygiene.

Best Practices

  • Be aware of any local public health or other orders related to COVID-19 that may affect your business.
  • Ensure your workplace cleaning company is up to date on current methods of safely removing COVID-19 hazards.
  • Communicate frequently and as transparently as possible with employees:
  • Provide expected timelines for recalling/rehiring employees.
  • Provide returning employees with recall or offer letters.
  • Train managers on dealing with employees that may face increased personal challenges during this time, such as bereavement and loss, childcare and school-cancellation challenges, financial stress, and other dependent care and support needs.
  • Offer flexibility wherever possible and adjust workloads to be reasonable.
  • Be prepared to quickly investigate and stop discriminatory speech or acts in the workplace.
  • Consider contracting with an employee assistance program (EAP) if you do not currently have one.
  • Designate a workplace coordinator who will be responsible for COVID-19 issues and their impact at the workplace.
Develop a plan to operate if absenteeism spikes or if another shelter-in-place or stay at home order occurs in the future:
  • Implement a plan to continue essential business functions.
  • Implement flexible work schedules and leave policies.
  • Cross-train employees on performing essential business functions.
  • Develop emergency communications plans, including a way to answer workers’ concerns.

Communicate your appreciation and welcome employees back to work.