When the pandemic struck, and the UK was plunged into lockdown in March 2020, millions of employees were furloughed as businesses responded to the pandemic. It has since been announced that the job retention scheme formed by the government will finally come to an end on September 30th and be withdrawn completely on October 1st, 2021, after 13 months.
As employees gradually return to their workplaces, here at Simply Law we’ve provided 5 ways you can welcome back your staff, making the transition for them as smooth as possible.
1) Put yourself in their shoes
For many of the employees, finding out that furlough is ending and they’re heading back into the workplace will feel daunting after a long period away, they’re likely to experience bouts of anxiety, having to socialise once again with their colleagues.
Some employees’ lives may be different, and balancing this may also add to their anxiety. It’s important as a business you make them feel as comfortable as possible.
2) Bring employees up to date
After a period away from the workplace employees will likely have a lot to catch up on; keeping them informed about what has changed and what they can expect going forward will make employees feel supported in any new challenges they may face.
You can keep employees up to speed by adding a designated area where staff can go to find all the up-to-date information they need.
3) Follow government guidance
As we all adjust to this new normal, it is important that as your employees go back into the workplace they’re made to feel safe in their environment.
Keeping up-to-date with the government’s COVID-19 guidelines will ensure that not only as a business you’re running as safely as possible, but also that staff knows what the guidelines are and how to follow them.
4) Support their overall wellbeing
Your employees will have experienced difficulties during the lockdown, with many of them likely to have felt lonely and isolated.
You can offer your staff access to resources and services to manage their health and wellbeing. You can also identify what support needs each employee has by scheduling a 1-1 focused session with them.
5) Incorporate team bonding
As your employees return to the workplace, team spirit is likely to be low after a tough couple of months, and as restrictions have eased and your staff becomes comfortable again at work, you can gradually start to incorporate team-bonding activities and challenges.
These activities can be either face-to-face or remotely using a platform such as a Zoom.
5 ways you can ensure your staff feel welcomed to get you started as they now start their return to work!
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