Wellbeing at work is one of the topics that have been increasingly spoken about over the last few years. It's tempting to think that this is a "nice to have" but the reality is that caring about your people's wellbeing creates deeper engagement and productivity, as well as ensuring you are meeting your legal obligations to keep employee's safe, both mentally and physically
At times like this people will be dealing with a lot of different stressors
Anxiety over physical wellbeing due to Covid-19
Concerns for family and loves ones
Concerns over jobs and job security
Being asked to work in a new way, and to do things differently
Risk of social isolation
Not being able to enjoy the normal level of freedoms to go out
Being aware of these and taking steps to support people through this time could make a huge difference to your people, their health and their connection with your business.
Wellbeing for furloughed employees
Don't let out of sight be out of mind - people who are furloughed are still employees. You continue to have an obligation to them, and to support their physical and mental wellbeing.
You should be checking in on them, asking how they are doing and looking to see whether there is anything you can do to support their wellbeing.
One real risk to people's mental wellbeing is anxiety over the future, or feeling disconnected. You should ensure that people who are furloughed are kept up to date with what is happening with the company, you should be providing information to them about their situation and anything that impacts this as soon as you can.
Where you have some people working and some people furloughed, it is likely that the two groups will have some links and so when you are communicating to one, think about whether this is something that the other needs to know. You want to ensure that you are managing that communication in the right way so people get the right message.
You may not be able to change the need to furlough people, but you can ensure that it is a better experience that doesn't create longer term risks to health and wellbeing.
Please note that this information is for guidance only and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking full legal advice on specific facts and circumstances at the relevant time.