Your verbal and written communication during the furlough period has kept you and your employees connected. Now that you are recalling employees, ensure that you don't miss any critical steps for their transition back to work. Your documentation and clear communication will minimize anxiety and provide a positive back to work experience!
Remember, furloughed employees are active employees, still employed by your company, who have had their hours reduced or may have even been on unpaid status for the last several weeks or months. Every company has unique conditions and restrictions, specific to their industry and business. As such, it's important to ensure your communication is customized and familiar to your employees.
Consider the following elements when drafting a recall letter:
The recall letter should have a positive tone welcoming the employee, similar to a job offer letter — especially if any information has changed!
Items to include in the recall letter include:
Outline Any Workplace Changes
It is important to communicate any changes that may have occurred at your company since the employee was furloughed. If no changes have occurred, note that as well.
Examples might include:
Mandatory Safety Precautions
Some of your employees may have concerns about returning to work, especially during a pandemic. Now more than ever, discussing and providing safety training is not only a good idea but also a requirement from the CDC. Many local ordinances will require additional safety precautions. Companies should check county guidelines as well as industry guidelines for specific requirements.
General safety rules to implement and communicate include:
Allow a reasonable amount of time for employees to respond to your letter, but note that employees must respond to you by a specific date. Include a statement about what will happen if they do not respond by the deadline. Indicate a contact person to call in case there are questions.
Finally, include an acknowledgment statement with a signature.
Let CEA Help!
Use CEA's Returning to Work, COVID-19 Tool Kit which includes a reinstatement letter, checklists, policies, and required posters. This tool kit is free to members (log in to HR Answers) and can be purchased from the CEA Store for $79!
If you need assistance with your return to work plan, reach out to CEA for HR Director consulting services.