As you reopen your business and welcome customers back in, we want to celebrate this big step with you! We realize you have 1,000 tasks to remember to do, so we want to share some tips as to what you could or should be communicating with your employees. These engaging ideas should help make for a smooth transition as you move into the next phase for your business.
If you haven't already done so, reach out to your employees individually and talk through any questions and concerns they may have about returning to the workplace.
Email your employees a checklist of things to remember to bring with them. This could include new hire paperwork if applicable, office equipment, personal protective equipment if they prefer to use their own, etc.
Send 'What to Expect' communication including cleaning protocols, check-in/out procedures for staff and clients or visitors, what has changed, and anything else that would help them feel physically and mentally prepared for the workspace they'll be working in. (Make sure you're following CDC, State, County, and City rules if applicable.)
Look at ways to redistribute tasks, especially if you are reopening at less than full capacity. Communicate new roles and expectations clearly to all parties.
Getting back into a regular work routine after a furlough can be an adjustment. Consider having employees start back mid-week.
Welcome your employees back with a personal note and/or small gift to show them they are a valued member of the company.
Hold a parking lot team Q&A picnic. Since we're all still practicing social distancing, invite employees to bring their own lunch and lawn chairs.
Compile a post/video/email featuring employees' 'Quarantine Life' and their tips and tricks they found for getting through the last few months.
Ask employees to contribute any ideas they might have to help the company during this time. Remember that if you ask for feedback, the worst thing we can do as leaders is to ignore it. So even if you don't plan on adopting the recommendations, thank your employees and consider implementing some of their ideas, especially if you hear repeated themes.
Establish points of contact so employees know who to go to with questions or concerns. You may need to designate different employees or managers to field questions about remote work, technology, safety protocols, equipment needs, next steps, etc.
Set up regular 1:1 check-ins with each employee to see how they are doing and to see if they have any suggestions after seeing how the business is operating.
Talk with employees about their goals, their future, possible training opportunities, or any new skills they are interested in learning, as their previously planned career paths may have shifted.
When we started 2020 bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, who knew our conversations would revolve around COVID-19, a global pandemic, layoffs, or payroll protection loans. As the outlook now becomes more uplifting, having open communication will be key to help alleviate employees' concerns, provide a positive re-onboarding experience, as well as helping you make the best possible decisions for your business. As always, we're here for you and any HR questions you may have. You know where to find us if you want to chat specifics!