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Tips for businesses to support employees during COVID-19


The novel coronavirus (COVID-19)has made a huge impact on how we go about our daily lives, and it looks like it is here to stay for the long-term. As we slowly get back to work, here are some tips on how business can continue to support employees during this pandemic.


  • Provide educational materials for staff on proper hand washing procedures and hygiene

  • Encourage people to practice proper coughing and sneezing etiquette

  • Inform staff of extra cleaning of office spaces by the office cleaners

- Ensure cleaning of offices and common areas is being done thoroughly. - This means increased cleaning & disinfecting, including deep-cleaning or “super cleaning”

  • Provide cleaning products so staff can keep their own workspaces clean

- Task OHS committees to send out e-mails reminding people to clean daily and wash their hands often

- Place cleaning products, gloves, masks, hand sanitizer and other cleaning- related things about the office

  • Reduced the number of staff in all offices to maintain physical distancing

- You may have some staff continuing to work at home while others will be on a rotating schedule to ensure social distancing in the office

  • Provide support for your remote staff to keep them engaged

  • Remind staff to take advantage of mental health benefits available from your insurance provider

  • Discourage travel between offices

  • Hold meetings virtually – teleconference or video conference

  • Ensure employees that are displaying any symptoms of flu or cold-like illness to report it to their manager. Those employees are asked to stay at home until they recover

  • Communicate to staff that they will not lose their job for staying home due to suspected COVID-19 symptoms

  • Ensure that employees that have returned from travel abroad, those who could have been exposed to someone with possible illness or that have a family member that is in self-isolation (for COVID-19 symptoms) are also staying at home

  • Ensure managers are staying in touch with employees that are out of the office for the above-mentioned reasons, by phone and e-mail, to enquire about any changes in their status

What can employees do to help stop the spread of COVID-19?

The best protection for staff working in your offices, is to follow the below hygiene protocols. Prevention methods are now required as the best protection both from being infected and spreading infection. These include:


  • Wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds

  • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available

  • Throw used tissues or other materials containing body fluids directly into the garbage immediately

  • Cough and sneeze into your sleeve rather than your hands and ensure any viral material from coughing or sneezing is not left on surfaces

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands

  • Avoid personal interaction which risks sharing viral bodily fluids such as saliva, (for example do not share cups or utensils)

  • If you don’t feel well – please stay home

  • Whenever possible do not share personal protective equipment

  • Clean up all dishes and ensure food is not left out on desks and counters


Physical Distancing


Scientists have said we can slow the spread of COVID-19 by making a conscious effort to keep a physical distance between each other. Physical Distancing is proving to be one of the most effective ways to reduce the spread of illness during an outbreak.

This means making changes in your everyday routines to minimize close contact with others, including:


  • Avoid crowded places and non-essential gatherings

  • Avoid common greetings, such as handshakes

  • Limiting contact with older adults and those in poor health

  • Keep a distance of at least 2 arms-length (approximately 2 metres or 6 feet) from others

All of the little things we do will add up and ensure we have a safe and healthy work environment for our employees.

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