Things employers can do for employees amid COVID-19 pandemic

The term “human resources” implies that people are extremely valuable to the organizations that employ them. In times of difficulty, such as the one we’re in currently, a good employer will safeguard their people, not only out of kindness and decency, but in the interest of the relationship. Below are a number of suggestions for applying a human touch to human resources.

Physical Health

Help employees improve their health status and physical resiliency.

  • Work with your broker partners and carriers to promote more targeted outreach disease management for at risk members.
  • Leverage safety and health teams to help promote how well-being connects with safety.
  • Promote tobacco cessation programs and state quit lines.
  • Encourage employees to use wellness programs to promote better overall health.
  • Remind employees of the different options available and any incentives.
  • Encourage employees to move throughout the day, take walks, and engage in healthy activities while still maintaining social distancing.

Provide resources for free at-home and outdoor fitness, meditation, and healthy eating.

  • Many major fitness and well-being companies are offering free digital memberships, live workouts on their social media pages, and online resources.
  • Promote telehealth resources to help employees have easier access to care.Encourage employees to register for telehealth while they are healthy, so that it is available with ease when needed.

Social Health

  • Promote ways to stay connected and allow for socialization with a regular short team call for highlighting achievements and sharing positive news.
  • Offer flexible hours when possible for employees managing children being schooled at home.
  • Look to local community resources for listings of groups providing virtual meet ups and social opportunities.
  • Provide materials to employees on daily habits and routines to help organize themselves and feel a sense of purpose.
  • Provide information on organizations for employees to find or provide help in their communities.
    • Blood donation information through the American Red Cross, the United Way, Meals on Wheels virtual 5k, community food banks.
  • Online meetings for substance abuse, grief counseling, and other groups.

Mental and Emotional Health

  • Provide employees with reminders of employee assistance programs (EAP), and free resources for crisis lines.
  • Remind employees to save the phone number in their phone.
  • Leverage existing programs for mental health and well-being.
  • Promote resources for health and activity, which can help to alleviate stress and anxiety.
  • Provide equipment and resources that can make working from home easier.
  • Even when employees are working from home, allow them to have set working hours so that they have time to unplug from work.
  • Encourage resources to practice gratitude, patience, and self-care during uncertain and challenging times.

Financial Health

  • Ensure employees understand their benefits and know how to find in-network providers.
  • Refresher on benefits of health savings accounts and how they can be used for medical expenses.
  • Provide information on State and Federal resources for aid and resources.
  • Inform employees of available financial wellness programs.

Contributed by Clayton Tolliver, McGriff Insurance Services |