Businesses facing further restrictions due to the latest regulations to prevent the spread of Covid-19 may need to check and update their employment policies, according to employment and employee relations specialists Law At Work (LAW).
The specialist advice service says many businesses, particularly in hospitality, will be considering how to temporarily shut down when the changes come into force on Friday 4th December, while others will need to update their risk assessments to remain open.
As part of efforts to contain the spread of the virus, all hospitality venues that have an alcohol licence must close, while others will have to ensure customers and staff maintain 2-metre distancing.
LAW says how those measures will affect individual businesses will need to be carefully considered. Richard Plaster, Director of LAW said: “There are a number of specific HR and Health and Safety issues that businesses need to re-visit in this fast-moving situation. Organisations will need to look at the HR policies for their employees if they are having to shut down. With new restrictions coming in, those that are remaining open need to be updating their risk assessments so that they not only meet the regulations, but they also follow the guidance to the letter.”
While many businesses will be waiting for the full guidance and regulations to be published by the Government, LAW says they will need to start preparing now.
Richard added: “This is about consultation with staff, getting their agreement and being very clear in the communications. Employers should be checking through contracts of employment to check options available to them. The other areas they should be looking at include whether the government support package will be sufficient. Those conversations could be about talking to staff on higher salaries about reducing those to the level where that Government support comes in. There are lots of fundamental issues that need to be considered and discussed with staff.”