Top Ten Tips for employees managing Covid-19

Advice  |   31 March 2020

1. Schedule. Employees should try and maintain a regular schedule and a work life balance. This will help them juggle all their responsibilities in these unprecedented times.

2. Communicate. With social distancing and isolation, many employees may not have an opportunity to communicate in their usual way. Employees should maintain regular contact with their employer and colleagues. This could involve using email, conference calls, zoom or skype to provide updates or have casual chit chat that would normally take place over a cup of tea.

3. Flexibility. Employees should have open and honest conversations with their employer regarding the need to juggle childcare and carer duties. If employees are finding it difficult to maintain their usual hours and routine, they should discuss temporarily agreeing flexible working with their employer.

4. Security. A lot of employees will be worried about job security, given the impact Covid19 is likely to be having on their employer and the wider economy. The Government and employers are trying to mitigate the impacts as much as they can. Employees may wish to try and accommodate reasonable temporary changes to the nature of their role, hours and terms and conditions to facilitate this.

5. Support. If employees are struggling with stress and anxiety or any other condition, they should inform their employer so they can receive support through this difficult time. Different employers will have different support mechanisms including an Employee Assistance Programme.

6. Finances. The Government has implemented numerous measures to provide financial security to employees during this time. This includes Universal Credit, Furlough Leave, and Statutory Sick Pay. If employees need clarification or reassurances on their financial position, they should discuss this with their employer in the first instance.

7. Performance and capability. Despite the impact of Covid-19, employers will be able to manage employees in the usual way. Therefore, Covid-19 does not give employees “immunity” in respect of conduct or capability issues.

8. Business as usual. Employees should continue to perform their role and duties to their best of their ability and continue to abide by their employer’s policies and procedures (as amended). Failure to do so could give rise to disciplinary or capability action being taken.

9. Dedicated space. For those employees working from home, it is important to have a dedicated space to perform their job and avoid interruptions or distractions. This will allow employees to effectively separate work and home, to the best of their ability.

10. Changing circumstances. Everyday we are experiencing a change in Government guidance, business needs and health considerations. If employees experience any change in their circumstances, they should update their employer so that reasonable measures can be put in place to support them.