Return to Work Brings New Business Challenges, HR Concerns


The reopening of non-essential businesses brings a plethora of HR challenges as states begin easing restrictions, says XpertHR, the leading HR employment compliance resource.

Each individual state sets its own timeline for businesses to open and employers should be aware that reopening guidelines may depend on where the company is located. For employers operating in more than one state, it’s especially important to understand the phased reopening dates and guidelines in the various states in which they operate. For example, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia and Wyoming are among the states with no Stay-At-Home Order in place. However, Alabama’s Safer-at-Home Order is extended through July 3, 2020 and New Jersey’s Stay-at-Home Order has no set end date. XpertHR’s continually updated COVID-19 Stay-at-Home Orders and Reopening Plans by State chart explains guidelines specific to each state.

No matter what the timeline or business location, reopening a business requires planning and preparation in order to provide a safe, supportive and productive work environment, says XpertHR.

One top-of-mind issue facing employers is the health and safety of employees. In order to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19, certain cleaning and disinfecting protocols should be implemented and followed during the pandemic. Other reopening issues include COVID-19 employee testing, determining staffing needs and preparing a business contingency plan.

“Before re-opening, it’s imperative that businesses establish health and safety protocols, ensure operational readiness, and reconfigure the work site layout to comply with social distancing guidelines,” says Amanda Czepiel, JD, Head of Content, XpertHR. “Employers can’t get back to business without making sure employees are adequately protected.”

XpertHR offers a host of resources to ensure employers are complying with return to work guidelines and employees are returning to work safely, including how to:

  1. Determine an organizational approach to reopening.
  2. Follow CDC and OSHA obligations.
  3. Reorganize the workplace setup.
  4. Develop a screening process.
  5. Safeguard employee privacy.
  6. Accommodate employees.
  7. Prepare for possible business disruptions.
  8. Develop communication strategies.

For a free copy of the guide, “How to Create a Coronavirus (COVID-19) Return-to-Work Plan,” visit XpertHR

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