Four Precautions Employers Should Take to Prevent the Spreading of Sickness in the Workplace

Over the course of the winter months, sickness in the workplace can decrease productivity and put more stress on employers to account for employee absences and client cancelations. In order to avoid the inconveniences that sickness creates in the work place, here are four precautions employers can take to insulate themselves from the pains of sickness.

 

  1. Preparation and Communication. The one positive of flu season is that it is predictable. This allows employers to get ahead of the issue before an outbreak occurs. Employers can help prevent the spreading of germs by posting helpful reminders around the office to wash hands regularly, and/or to get a flu shot. If your business lends itself well to telecommuting or working remotely, employers should communicate their policies and expectations for these alternatives prior to when sickness is most likely to occur. 

 

  1. Addressing Day-to-Day Issues. Setting up clear policies that account for common day-to-day issues regarding employee sickness creates clear guidelines for how workers can deal with these issues when they arise. If an employee’s child is ill, whether an employee can receive paid family leave may vary based on a business’ size, self-imposed guidelines, and policies. If an employee is noticeably ill while at work, an employer may require that employee to stay home to recover. These are issues employers should address directly by clearly articulating what their policies are in writing prior to issues arising.

 

  1. Social Distancing. Although it may seem awkward to avoid a handshake or close eye contact with co-workers or clients, if an employee believes they are getting sick or knows that they are sick, avoiding social formalities of this type is essential to creating a reasonably safe workplace during the winter months. Employers should discuss polite techniques with employees in how to appropriately avoid these potentially infectious encounters.  

 

  1. Provide Sources of Wellness. Employers can help to avoid the spreading of sickness by providing small and affordable sources of wellness in the office. Providing fruit such as apples, bananas, and oranges in the break room or purchasing small disinfectant bottles are two great ways employees can limit the spreading of germs while improving employee health.

 

If you have any further questions of how to prevent sickness from taking over the workplace, or for any questions related to business or estate planning, please contact us at jfournier@jeflegal.com or 860.670.3535.