It is essential for organizations to prepare for pandemics by drawing new policies and mitigating risks.
The COVID-19 pandemic caught organizations off guard with a forced lockdown, sudden shift to remote working, and an increase in cyber threats. Many companies learned a harsh lesson – the importance of understanding position in the current environment and preparing relevant pandemic response policies, to be ready for future pandemics. The latest survey from National Main Street Center said that close to 7.5 million small businesses were reportedly at risk of closing down because of the pandemic.
This pandemic has made organizations understand the need to create a course of action that must be applied to get through the crisis and go back to business when it ends. Mostly, organizations that offer critical services including utilities national infrastructure, the defense were most likely to have policies in place. However, the rest of the enterprises were caught unaware.
For instance, companies can consider creating a COVID-19 incubation leave policy to allow
employees who are suspected of having the virus can take time off work and isolate
themselves. It now becomes essential for organizations to adopt attendance policies to the new normal.
Organizations need to be extra sure of using only official sources of public health guidance to determine the risks of COVID-19 for their business. It is important to avoid determining risk based on an employee’s race, country of origin, or direct observations of an employee’s health condition.
During this panic situation, many organizations had to quickly determine how to navigate the health aspect of the crisis in any pandemic. A pandemic response plan should include ensuring employees are equipped with the necessary tools for working from home, focusing on their safety, the security of data and devices, not to mention networking, and more. It makes a great deal of sense, now, to establish a pandemic policy. Enterprise leaders can proactively alleviate several uncertainties their company faces while grappling with the impact of COVID-19. With the pandemic policy, it should become easier for IT and HR leaders to make informed decisions about work from home protocols and offering guidance on dealing with employee support resources.
At the same time, it is vital for these pandemic policies to be flexible because the processes and protocols will vary based on the type of illness. In the end, a pandemic policy should have the potential to focus on decreeing response time, making sure there is sufficient infrastructural and operational support, and having necessary supplies at their disposal.