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How to Effectively Manage Your Staff’s Return to the Office

Understanding practical policies related to smoothly managing your people

As states reopen following coronavirus (COVID-19) closures, associations may start considering the same with their workspaces. While industry groups and building management companies have offered guidance, a lot has been focused on the building. Recently, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) put out a checklist of HR-related items to help employers manage the staff portion of the return.

When it comes to bringing employees back, there are several factors to consider. I spoke with SHRM Senior HR Knowledge Advisor Julie Schweber about those factors, and have some real-world advice the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) offered during a recent ASAE webinar, “Preparing Your Office and Employees for Returning to the Workplace.”

Deciding who to bring back first. Most reopening plans suggest bringing back employees in tiers, because social-distancing requirements won’t allow for the return of all staff. So, how does one choose who to bring back? “A lot of it may depend on the business needs,” said. “Who are they servicing? Is it a group of professionals who can work from a laptop, or is it a front-facing business?”

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