Most, if not all, of us are actively monitoring the developments and news surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. There is a lot of talk about how it is currently impacting, and will continue to impact, the global economy and businesses as a whole. But business owners are also contending with how this potential health crisis will affect their local workforce. Thankfully, there are some ways a company can help its employees stay safe and remain productive. Keep reading for the top 3 activities you should do to prepare.
1. Review and update your business continuity plan
Review your existing business continuity and disaster recovery plan through the lens of an array of possibilities that would disrupt productivity and operations. Are you able to answer the questions about how your basic workflows will adjust and who will be identified as back-up personnel for key functional roles if someone is ill? Do you have vendors or suppliers in the affected areas and how does that impact your operations and revenue? Have your process and controls outlined and easily identifiable during a pandemic event.
2. Test your collaboration and networking solutions
This is a good time to test and check that your IT infrastructure can support remote workers. Confirm your employees have remote access capabilities and your VPN and equipment is up to date to handle the capacity of a large majority of your workforce connecting from home or away from the office. Also test your web and voice conferencing and make sure your employees know how to use it and have application access.
3. Prepare and support your employees
Your people are the most important asset you have and preparing them for a potential pandemic event without causing panic is paramount. Keep the lines of communication open and schedule time to train your teams on working remotely, correctly accessing systems, along with processes, policy and procedures. Limit business travel and opt for virtual meetings with clients and/or vendors. Urge your sick employees to stay at home (and work remotely if able) and send employees home who present symptoms of respiratory illness. Assure your teams that their health and wellness is important.
While we don’t fully know the impact of COVID-19, by preparing for absenteeism in the workplace and business disruptions, you can help make sure your business will not see lasting setbacks.
For the latest information about COVID-19 and to monitor public health recommendations, visit the following: