Challenger Covid-19 Survey: 62% of Companies Will Keep Covid Plans in Place Until Experts Declare It Is Safe; 39% Will Aid in Contact Tracing Efforts
As the Trump Administration releases guidelines for reopening the economy, Human Resources executives nationwide are contemplating when and how they will reopen work sites. The majority will keep their COVID plans, which include working from home and closing non-essential businesses, in place until experts agree it is safe, while 24% plan for the crisis to keep businesses closed for 1 to 3 months, according to a new survey from global outplacement and executive coaching firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.
The survey was conducted online among over 300 human resources executives from companies nationwide of various sizes and industries between April 12 and April 16.
When asked what would trigger the reopening of their businesses, 47% stated they would follow the lead of each location’s state governors. Nearly 14% said they would heed the advice of a combination of local, state, and federal leaders, as well as leading scientific experts and internal research. Another 13% stated they would act in accordance with the federal government’s guidelines while another nearly 13% will listen to leading scientific experts. Five percent responded “Other” which includes responses about adopting a phased approach to reopening.
“Companies across the country are eager to return to business as usual. However, the new normal will look quite different from how business was done a mere two months ago. HR executives are closely following government mandates and are planning protocols to keep workers, customers, and their loved ones safe,” said Andrew Challenger, Senior VP of Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.
Indeed, 93% will take precautions once their workers return to work, while 7% are unsure at this time how they will proceed. Zero respondents said they would take no precautions once workers returned.
“Employers are grappling with how to best equip their teams once they come back to work sites. Many will follow social distancing guidelines, limit gatherings and supply PPE to their workers,” said Challenger.
For businesses that can allow their workers to work from home, 28% are making those accommodations permanent for some of their workforce, while 6% said they would make these accommodations permanent for all of their workers. 27.5% reported they would allow their workers to work from home until they reported they felt safe to come back to the office.
Another 8% of companies said they would require workers to come back to the office once it was determined that the crisis had passed.