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Vaccinations, Face Coverings and Employee Engagement? Related?

Remember the days when we didn’t have to think of Face Coverings, 6 Feet, Vaccination, etc???  It seems like a lifetime ago.

I was speaking with Human Resources (HR) Specialist Tanja Halsall, the Owner of Potentia HR, and she was helping some of my clients through these questions.  I asked if she could put an article together that I could post to bring awareness to my clients?  She said Yes… Thank you Tanja

At Potentia HR, we are fielding many questions around mandating vaccinations, ongoing use of face coverings, and engagement strategies for remote workers.  In BC, the government is not taking a stand of “mandating” vaccinations (in most industries).  However, we do recommend providing employees with time off (where possible) to get a Covid-19 vaccine and making sure that your organization is clear around your policy on how this time off will be managed (lieu time, sick time, time taken for appointments, personal time, etc. ).  Many employers we work with are using language similar to: “We are all in this together, however vaccination is a choice and we understand that some may not have the ability to be vaccinated due to health concerns, and we respect all points of view.  However, for those who wish to be vaccinated, we are committing to doing our best to ensure that you have the time and opportunity to do so”.  Ensuring your people managers are equipped to answer questions and are consistent in their approach will be key to a successful communication strategy. With communication a key component of engagement, managing your org.’s approach to vaccinations will definitely support your engagement strategy.

One of the other common questions that we are getting is:  “Will my employees still have to wear a mask once they have their vaccination?”. This question is best answered by our health leaders; at this point, our understanding is yes.  We recommend that People Leaders and HR Professionals check local health authority websites as well as Worksafe for updates on a weekly (min) basis.  It is very important that employers educate employees around OH&S guidelines.

WorkSafe BC

Alberta Occupational Health & Safety 

Alberta Health Services

Lastly, as working remotely becomes more of a regular occurrence as opposed to an interim solution, consider how you will maintain your culture (or help your culture thrive in a different way):

  • Keep the daily health checks going (and as per WorkSafe, please hold onto the data for now);
  • Encourage your people to work from home where possible;
  • Do your best to prevent employees from congregating;
  • Communication is key. Daily check ins, social coffee breaks, working remotely with a “buddy”, weekly “happy hours”, are all helpful for sustaining your org. culture while people are segregated;
  • Check in with your employees; ask how they are doing, how they are coping and find the most meaningful communication plan for them to feel connected to the team.

We are standing by and happy to have a conversation around vaccinations, face coverings, engagement strategies, and any other people and culture topics that would be meaningful for you.  As a team, we are always here for you and happy to help. [email protected]

Glendinning Insurance Services stays engaged with the Employer and Employees, please contact us with any questions. 250-764-7796.

we are your Trusted Advocates