Supporting Staff during COVID-19

by Stacey Mc Grath, Digital Marketing Executive with Intelligo Sofrware who provide Corporate HR Software and Payroll Software

If the last few weeks have taught us anything as employers, it’s the flexibility, resourcefulness and importance of our workforce. Businesses that would never have imagined running with a fully mobile team have done just that and with little or no bumps in productivity – Intelligo are included in this. Regardless of this, our employees need more support now than ever, and our abilities as leaders will be put to the test. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, personnel needs were known and understood, but as things have changed, so have these requirements. Now we need to stay apart to stay together, but still, rally teams to work harder than ever. Thinking on this, here are a few ways we can provide much-needed support as employers during this crisis so that remote working, doesn’t feel so well…remote.

Always Update your Team

During this time, providing a concise and single source of communication is vital.  Using the many mediums available, such as an intranet, you should continually communicate what your business is doing to protect the employees and the health of the business. Along with traditional ways of communications, consider presenting some news through visual mediums, such as Google Hangout, and have the Company Directors deliver the message personally.

Encourage Comfort

Working from home, you quickly realise how luxurious some office facilities can be. Think ergonomic office chairs and decent coffee. Not all employees will have a ready-to-go home office setup and while it’s suitable for a day here or there, working at the kitchen table isn’t ideal in the long-term, and we do not know how long this will go on for. Offering a reimbursement program can encourage employees to purchase a few items that could make their temporary office space more comfortable and functional to their productivity.

Keep the ‘Water Cooler’ Chat

Physical offices are communal spaces where your employees make connections with their teammates. So you would be surprised when a ‘how are you?’ comment or face to face contact is sorely missed while working remotely. During the current pandemic, leadership could be forgiven for ensuring all conversations as business-critical and indeed business-focused. Still, this isn’t the time to put off your one-on-one meetings or quick check-ins with employees. Schedule virtual chats or phone calls with your reports and be sure to take the conversation beyond work and even beyond COVID-19.

In troubled times, support from employers can directly affect an employee’s productivity and mental health.  So these few steps will stand the test of time as we overcome the effects of COVID-19, ensuring businesses, staff and well everyone will make for a smoother transition back to regular life.